Moxa is a herb (mugwort – Artemisia Vulgaris) used primarily for tonification in Chinese medicine and can be administered in a variety of ways. For example, on the end of a needle to transmit warmth deep into an acupuncture point.
Moxa is rather smoky and a bit smelly, but most patients find the process very comforting and pleasant and the smoke is almost completely eliminated with the use of an extractor fan (Tooting Bec clinic only).
Another common approach is with a moxa stick, which looks like a long cigar and is used to warm larger areas or along meridian pathways.
Direct moxa refers to the herb being burnt directly on the skin with cones of varying sizes – from the size of a rice grain to a couple of inches high. As soon as the patient feels it is getting too hot the cone is removed to avoid being burnt.
However, a safer method & one which adds to the treatment is to use slices of fresh ginger to burn the moxa cone on. These can then be easily removed when it becomes too hot.
Dragon moxa is a standalone treatment which takes approximately 90mins. It is a deeply tonifying treatment which warms & energizes the internal organs. The ginger dish can be moved around to access all the principal points that lie along & beside the spine. In Chinese medical theory, the treatment boosts Yang Qi & generates internal fluids. It is also great for the lower back.