CNMA is thrilled to announce that Melissa Crum, LAc, is joining our team at Colorado Natural Medicine + Acupuncture as an acupuncturist in Castle Rock, Colorado. With over two decades of extensive experience, Melissa has developed a unique blend of Japanese-style acupuncture and traditional techniques, addressing a range of conditions from chronic pain to hormone imbalances, from aesthetic acupuncture to microneedling. Her journey started from a background in Western Medicine and transitioned to the profound wisdom of Chinese Medicine and holistic health care.
In this Q & A Melissa shares her professional journey, her distinct approach to acupuncture and aesthetic acupuncture, and the broader benefits of this ancient healing art.
Q: What inspired you to pursue a career in holistic health & acupuncture? Can you talk about your background?
“I was originally pursuing a career in Western Medicine when I realized that I have always turned to herbs, homeopathy, and natural medicine as a first line of defense. I felt it was much more in alignment for me to attend Chinese Medicine School. I was most interested in herbal medicine, but realized I could learn acupuncture as well. I am so grateful to have made the choice that I did. I really love them both, but I have found through the course of my career that I have tended to do more acupuncture than herbal medicine.
“I was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska. I attended The University of Nebraska for some time, moved to England for a year, and returned to Nebraska. At that time, I joined the Air National Guard and trained in the military. I was assigned to two different specialties. The one that I really loved was being a medical technician and EMT.
“After moving to New Mexico, I attended the University of New Mexico and from there, the International Institute of Chinese Medicine. I graduated from the Institute in 2000 and have been a practitioner ever since.”
Q: How would you describe your personal philosophy or approach to acupuncture?
“I tend to use Japanese Style acupuncture which involves very gentle needling and abdominal palpation for diagnosis. I believe that every person is different and no one style of acupuncture is better than another. The body has an amazing ability to heal itself. Sometimes, a gentle push is needed to allow that process. Acupuncture is an elegant way to do that.”
Q: For those who might not be familiar, how does Japanese style acupuncture differ from other forms, and what are its unique benefits?
“Japanese acupuncture relies heavily on abdominal palpation for diagnosis. The tongue and pulse are also observed to help come up with the proper points for the individual. Japanese acupuncture needling tends to be very gentle and uses ultrafine needles. It is just another way to get to the same result as the Traditional Chinese style of acupuncture.
“Japanese acupuncture often includes doing both a front and back treatment.”
Q: You treat a variety of conditions with acupuncture. Could you tell us about the specific areas or conditions that you specialize in?
“I have treated a lot of pain over my 23 years of practice. I also treat auto-immune disorders, digestive disorders, hormone imbalances, and headaches/migraines.”
Q: Alongside general acupuncture, you offer aesthetic treatments like microneedling, nanoneedling, and facial acupuncture. What inspired you to venture into aesthetic acupuncture?
“I really like to learn new techniques and I have been interested in aesthetic acupuncture since the beginning of my studies. Other facial techniques were just a natural progression. Not everyone is a good candidate for facial acupuncture (for example those with migraines and high blood pressure), but the other techniques offer alternatives to facial acupuncture.”
Q: What is something you wish more people knew or understood about acupuncture?
“I describe the feeling you get from acupuncture is how you feel after a massage. It is very relaxing and not painful. The needles are the size of a hair, and not hollow. It is nothing like getting a shot.
“Acupuncture can treat so many other conditions besides pain. Most people who try it, love it.”
Melissa Crum is currently accepting new patients at CNMA. If you live in the Castle Rock / Douglas County area and want to learn more, please use the following link to schedule with Melissa or call 303.688.6698.