Sleep is an important part of our day and vital for our bodies to rest and reset. How much you need depends on your age and can range from 12-17 hours for babies to 7-9 hours for adults. But when we have trouble with getting to sleep it may seem like the problem is insurmountable, especially in the middle of the night. Prolonged insomnia can make you feel unwell and can lead to concentration difficulties and lack of judgement, mood swings, anxiety and depression. Insomnia is also a contributing factor in diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.

Millions of people worldwide are affected by insomnia at some point in their lives. Such is its prevalence in today’s society, there are whole organisations dedicated to supporting people with insomnia and sleep disorders. So, what is it and what can we do to help us fall asleep and stay asleep?

What is insomnia?

Insomnia is a disorder where people have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Many report being tired and ready to sleep, then getting into bed, turning off the light and being wide awake. Others report they wake up fully alert and unable to switch their brains off or relax enough to get back off to sleep.

Causes of insomnia are many and varied. They include jet lag, shift work, physical pain and discomfort, lack of exercise, recreational drug use and care duties. Mental health issues such as depression and anxiety can be a cause and a symptom of insomnia. Prescriptions drugs, such as corticosteroids, statins and beta blockers have been noted to exacerbate sleep issues. Sometimes, there doesn’t seem to be any tangible cause.

Medical Treatment

Typical interventions from the medical profession have varying degrees of efficacy. Prescription drugs are used, although GPs no longer prescribe sleeping pills as often as they used to. Counselling and CBT is also an option, sometimes in conjunction with medication. Over the counter sleep aids are available, but not always useful as they can make you drowsy during the day. Sometimes melatonin is available, but is most often prescribed to children with learning disabilities. This, however, is not licensed by NICE as a sleep aid.

Alternative help with Cambourne Acupuncture

There are things that we can all do at home to try to improve our sleep such as reducing caffeine, increasing physical exercise and adopting relaxation techniques. Treatment at Cambourne Acupuncture can be an integral part of your journey back to good sleep too.

During a consultation we’ll assess your recent clinical signs and symptoms and your experience of insomnia to identify the underlying cause of your insomnia and factor this into your treatment course.

Acupuncture aims to rebalance the energy flow around your body so it is in alignment with your circadian rhythms. Certain points on your body are stimulated to encourage relaxation and can have a rather pleasant sedative effect! A course of Chinese herbal medicine may be recommend for certain causes of insomnia. For example, during a woman’s menopause phase when insomnia can be a common issue.

If you are beginning to have sleep issues, or have had insomnia for a long time, do contact us to see how we can help you get a good night’s sleep. We are members of the British Acupuncture Council and you can find out more on how acupuncture can help treat insomnia on their website:

Treatment for warts and verrucas

Unsightly and often occurring in visible places, warts and verrucas can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. But you don’t have to put up with them on your hands and feet forever.

There is many an old wives’ tale about how to get rid of them, from the sublime frog kissing to the ridiculous drawing an ‘X’ in the middle of a crossroads and spitting on it (please look both ways before trying this)!

There is an easier way and one that will not get you arrested or run over.

What are warts and verrucas and what causes them?

Warts and verrucas (planar warts) are small rough lumps on the skin, usually found on the hands or the feet. Some can appear on the face, often the forehead. They are an infection in the top layers of skin caused by a strain of viruses called human papillomavirus (HPV). The virus is passed on via direct contact with someone else who has warts or verrucas. The virus can get into the layers of skin via scratches or cuts and some people are more susceptible to contracting them than others.

Warts are harmless but can be itchy and uncomfortable. Verrucas can be more painful and many describe the feeling as a sharp sting through their foot as they walk. Both are highly contagious and left untreated they can last months, or sometimes years.

How they are treated by your doctor or pharmacist

Conventional treatment will usually start with a visit to the pharmacist, where you can buy plasters and creams to kill the virus and restore the skin. These act by eating away the skin to eradicate the virus and soften the area so it can heal. The side effects of this can be further pain, blistering and irritation of the skin. When they become persistent, a doctor might treat them with liquid nitrogen which acts to freeze-burn the skin.

Quite often, however, warts and verrucas don’t respond to any conventional treatment and recur again and again. Continual treatment with creams can damage the skin, making further warts more likely and compromise your overall health and wellbeing.

How Cambourne Acupuncture treats warts

At our clinic we treat warts and verrucas with a combination of acupuncture and herbal medicine. Small acupuncture needles are inserted around the affected areas in other areas of the body to regulate and boost the immune system. We can also use moxa therapy, which involves heated moxa held close to the skin or on acupuncture needles.

Herbs are carefully selected to in preparations that are administered orally as a tea. This helps to tackle the virus from inside the body.

Successful treatment of verrucas after years of recurrence – Rachel’s story

“Having had verrucas on my feet for 8 years I became very self-conscious about the soles of my feet and gave up any activities where they may have been on display. Last summer the infection spread to my fingers and I developed warts around both thumb nails. Jane treated me with a combination of herbs & acupuncture. I was amazed and also hugely excited. My feet & hands are now clear. The infection has gone. I have taken up swimming & yoga again. I am delighted with the results of Jane treatment & cannot recommend her highly enough for her skill, patience, kindness & encouragement. Thank you!”

This testimonial was from 2010 so I reached out to Rachel again to see how she is now. I’m delighted to say that ten years on, Rachel is still free from warts and verrucas. She has never had another problem.

If you would like to discuss skin conditions or any other problems worrying you, you can call us to discuss your concerns or click here to book an initial online consultation to talk about a course of treatment designed for you.

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome treatment

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common disorders women experience today. It can affect as many as one in three women in the UK. It is a multifaceted disorder which ranges in severity in each person. Ovaries become enlarged and have fluid-filled follicles (or sacs) that surround the egg.

What are the symptoms of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome?

The higher than normal levels of certain hormones caused by PCOS can affect the development and release of eggs during ovulation.  As a result, many women’s menstrual cycles become long or irregular and their ovulations are infrequent. They can develop excess facial or body hair or acne, as well as thinning hair and hair loss from the head. The syndrome is also linked with increased insulin resistance and diabetes plus other metabolic disorders, as well as pregnancy complications such as pre-eclampsia.

Not all women with polycystic ovary syndrome will present the same way or have the same symptoms as it can vary in severity in each person. Some will have mild or no symptoms apart from irregular periods, so it can often be difficult to diagnose.

What causes PCOS?

The jury is out on what is the exact cause of PCOS. Stress is said to be a factor, as are hormonal imbalances.

Conventional treatments

Conventional treatments for PCOS may concentrate on reducing the many symptoms and factors that exacerbate the syndrome. This may be support to lose weight, as well as strategies to reduce stress. Contraceptive pills may be prescribed to reduce body hair and acne. Diabetes medication may be offered to treat Type 2 diabetes and reduce PCOS symptoms.

If the woman wants to get pregnant, fertility medication may be prescribed. Surgery is the last resort for some, where portions of the ovaries may be removed, which can (in some cases) kick-start ovulation.

Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine can help

Research has demonstrated that acupuncture can increase ovulation and reduce the level of male hormones that cause excess hair on the body and hair loss on the head. In addition, acupuncture works to harmonise the nervous system, calming or stimulating depending on what is required for a balanced state of health and wellbeing.

A course of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine can also help with insulin sensitivity, as well as improve hormonal balance.

I have PCOS. Will I be able to get pregnant?

Acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and lifestyle tweaks can make a significant difference to your fertility health. At Cambourne Acupuncture we design a treatment regimen specifically designed to support your fertility goals and we have had great success with women who have previously been unable to fall pregnant.

Vicki’s experience of getting pregnant during treatment at our clinic

“We had been trying for three years to conceive. We didn’t think we’d have any problems as I had fallen pregnant the first time after only a couple of months. After many tests it was discovered that I had PCOS.

I went through a whole host of emotions from guilt and heartache to frustration and anger. After searching for answers, I found Jane’s website and phoned her. Within the first consultation, I found Jane so empathetic and was amazed that for the first time a professional said to me ‘I don’t see any reason why you shouldn’t be able to conceive again’. I followed all Jane’s advice and she was a constant support.

I would recommend Jane without hesitation. She always provided me with consistent advice and I’m so thankful to her for all her support before and during my pregnancy.”

To find out more about how Acupuncture can help treat the causes and symptoms of PCOS, visit the British Council of Acupuncture’ information page.

If you have any issues and want to talk to us about treatment in our clinic, take advantage of our FREE first consultation you can book here.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Historically, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) has had a bad rap. In the past, it was nicknamed Yuppie Flu, because it was reported that well-paid, but overworked, young middle-class people seemed to catch it in droves. They were blamed for working too hard and burning themselves out.

But, to the 260,000 people affected by it in the UK, it is no joke. On average, the condition lasts for at least six years and many live with a form of the condition for life.

Symptoms and Severity

CFS is different for every individual who contracts it. The main symptom that is shared amongst all is the extreme tiredness that is not relieved by resting or sleeping. This isn’t just an experience of being weary. The feeling can be overwhelming and sufferers say that they can’t see an end to it.

Other symptoms include insomnia, muscle and joint pain, headaches, flu-type symptoms and sore throat, dizziness and foggy brain.

It goes without saying that having just a few symptoms from the list above can have serious consequences on your life. Coupled with the fact that a diagnosis for CFS is not a fast process, as it has very similar symptoms to other conditions, so you may have a flurry of examinations and blood tests to rule out most of these.

All this, and the every-day pain and exhaustion affect work, relationships and your mental health.

Typical treatment plans

Once diagnosed, the traditional approach is to draw up a plan for you that may include lifestyle changes and a healthy diet. You may be offered cognitive behavioural therapy and sympathetic employers might make adjustments to help manage your activity levels.

There isn’t a targeted drug that treats or cures CFS but you may be advised to take painkillers or anti-depressants if it is affecting your mental health.

The most common message suffers are told is, “there’s nothing that can be done… you have to live with it..”

How acupuncture and herbal medicine can help

Sometimes acupuncture on its own is used, sometime a combined approach is more suitable. It depends on the specific symptoms and your individual circumstances.

Here are a couple of examples of people I’ve helped:

Nick’s experience

Nick had been suffering with the symptoms of CFS for nine years.

“For years I was told that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome was untreatable and that I would have to live with it for life.”

He suffered with low energy, palpitations and insomnia. He was constantly tired and anxious.  This situation was perfect to treat with acupuncture.

Nick commented that: “…with regular treatment I am able to continue a normal life just as I was before being diagnosed.”

Karen’s experience

Karen had a range of symptoms and she too was told that nothing more could be done.

“I spent years feeling tired, lethargic with constant viral symptoms i.e. muscle aches & pains, pins & needles, constant sore throat & always being ill as I had a weak immune system. I was also being treated with drugs by this point for depression.”

For Karen, I recommended a combined approach of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine.
“Jane treated me holistically as an individual. After a course of acupuncture & herbs all the symptoms disappeared, I felt well in myself and my energy levels returned. I was also able to discontinue the depression medication.

Want to learn more?

We are regulated by the British Acupuncture Council, who have factsheets to explain the effectiveness of acupuncture with illnesses and conditions. To read more about acupuncture for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, you can click this link.

For more information about Chinese Herbal medicine you can click this link


If you have CFS and want to get in touch with me to discuss how I can help, you can call for an exploratory call, or book here

Miscarriage is not something that is spoken about readily and in the open.

Certainly, people who have miscarriages find it difficult to talk about the experience. The loss of a pregnancy can be devastating and it doesn’t seem like there is a person in the world who understands. It’s normal to feel a whole host of emotions if this happens to you.

Symptoms range from cramps and spotting to full contractions and labour. The emotional consequences are ones of grief, shame and inadequacy.

The experience can impact the whole family.

Why they happen

Around twenty percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage and can happen in the first three months of pregnancy.

The causes are many and include irregular hormone levels in the mother, some infections, abnormalities in the womb and certain medications. Smoking also increases the risk, as does alcohol and drug use.

You may not find out the exact cause of your miscarriage and it is quite common for medical tests to fail to explain the reasons why.

Most miscarriages can’t be prevented, but a nutrient rich diet low in refined carbohydrate and moderate exercise helps keep you healthy and well.

Not consuming certain foods and drinks are a good idea too. Alcohol, coffee and inflammatory foods should be avoided.

Thinking about getting pregnant again

After a miscarriage, many people will be anxious about getting pregnant again. Having doubts is normal, as you may feel that you could miscarry again. Taking time to think about your decision and discuss it with your partner is important, as it can take a toll on your emotions and mental health.

Rest and relaxation are the most important aspect of recovery and are often overlooked. The body after a miscarriage needs to time to heal.

How acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine can help in recovery and for future pregnancies

We practice gentle treatment for future pregnancies by combining carefully selected traditional herbal medicine and targeted acupuncture at our clinic.  Combining the two gives real strength to the treatment. Together they can help your body recover after a miscarriage by rebalancing your hormones and regulating your periods. They can also help bring strong blood-flow back to your womb and abdomen.

Treatment and lifestyle advice are intended to support each stage of a woman’s ovulatory cycle, since a woman’s chemical balance changes from week to week.

We also use temperature charting to access the health of a woman’s cycle. This is how minor abnormalities in a woman’s cycle are observed.

Some real-life success stories


Collette had had two consecutive miscarriages and feared she would never have children. When she booked an appointment at Cambourne Acupuncture, she was, in her own words “a broken lady”.

She goes on to say that “after treatment with Jane, my next pregnancy was to be a success and I finally got my rainbow baby. What [Jane] can do for you is priceless. Thank you so much for your help and support”.


If you’ve had a miscarriage, or have been having difficulty getting pregnant, please do get in touch and we can discuss how we can help. You can click on the contact us tab to find out more, or you can book an appointment. We are currently offering a free consultation with your first appointment.