Success Stories

These thoughtful patients took the time to write about how Dawn Balusik helped them. They have shared their testimonial stories as inspiration for those who are considering treatment. For more recommendations, please visit our LinkedIn Page, and click on "View Full Profile".

Click on a condition below to go to the corresponding testimonials.

Abdominal Pain   *   Allergies   *  Arthritis  *  Asthma

Autism Spectrum Disorder   *  Back Pain, Lower

 Back Pain, Middle   *   Back Pain, Upper   *   Bell's Palsy 

Bursitis   *   Cancer   *   Diarrhea   *   Diverticulitis  

 Dizziness   *   Endometriosis   *   Fibromyalgia   

Foot Pain    *   Hand Pain   *   Headaches  

 Hip Pain  *   Infertility 

  Knee Pain   *   Melanoma   *   Migraine   *   Meniere's

Neck Pain   *   Ovarian Cysts   *   RSD   *   Sciatica   *  

Sinus    *   Tendinitis 

 Ulcerative Colitis  *    Wrist Pain


 

Abdominal Pain (ovarian cysts and unexplained digestive pain):

I have been trying to conceive for about 6 months, but because of suffering from severe ovarian cyst, I had become worried about my fertility, which brought me to Dawn Balusik. For the last year, I would have an extremely painful and large cyst every month. Neither my doctor nor my OB/GYN could help with the cause or fix them from getting so large, so, I would suffer from pain for about 2 weeks out of each month.

On the day of my first scheduled appointment with Dawn, I happened to have a flare-up of another problem. I have had 5 surgeries resulting from a ruptured appendix and later gall bladder removal. After that, I started suffering from a severe stomach pain and swelling. This would happen almost daily for approximately 2 years. I would never know when it was going to happen and when it did, I was in so much pain that I would cry and have to take prescription pain pills to make it stop. I had been hospitalized twice and had multiple tests like upper GI’s, Cat Scans, MRI, blood test, urine test, endoscopy, all with no avail to what the cause was. I had been working with my regular doctor and a specialist who finally referred me to Mayo Clinic for further diagnosis. There is an extremely long waiting list to get in.

I didn’t realize that this was also something Dawn could help with. So, as I was in pain, I started telling her about both of my problems, always being told that there was no way that the two areas could be connected. After my first week of acupuncture, following the diet and taking the herbs, I was already seeing a huge improvement, from having pain daily to just one time. After three weeks of treatment, I have had no more stomach pain, and my first month without an ovarian cyst in over a year. I couldn’t be happier. I only wish that I would have found Dawn sooner, it would have saved me many years of pain, suffering and frustration with my doctors.

- Heather C., Seminole, FL

Allergies / Sinus:

For the last 20+ years, I have been suffering from allergies and severe sinus infections, pressure and headaches. These would routinely flair up in the spring and fall months. When I moved to Florida 7 years ago, I was having flair ups almost year round, which at times were so debilitating that I had to miss days at work and avoid enjoying the beautiful outdoor activities in Florida like golf, swimming and picnics. I lived on allergy medicines, nasal inhalers and decongestants. It seemed I was always at the doctor for my allergies or a bronchial or sinus infection.

I began seeing Dawn Balusik in June 2005 and have been symptom-free since! Amazing! I can now enjoy activities outdoors, even on days with high pollen counts. As long as I have routine acupuncture and take my Chinese herbs, I remain free from my past allergies and sinus troubles. I haven't seen my family doctor for any sinus/allergy issues since treatment with Dawn began, and I no longer take any prescription or over-the-counter meds for allergies.

Before having treatments with Dawn, I was not a believer in acupuncture and was quite skeptical. As a matter of fact, I am terrified of needles, so I was not looking forward to the first treatment. Needless to say, Dawn is extremely professional, compassionate and puts you at ease immediately. The treatments are actually very relaxing, I usually fall asleep or meditate, and I look forward to them! I saw relief from my symptoms in just a couple of treatments. What is even more amazing to me, is how much better I feel in general after my treatments. I am now a firm believer in the benefits of acupuncture and Oriental medicine to my overall health and wellness!

Thank you Dawn for giving me my life back!

- Ellen C., Clearwater, FL

Arthritis: 

My name is Melissa J and today is 2/26/13. I want to share with you how Dawn Balusik changed my life. I struggled with foot ailments since 2004, but they hit their peak in 2010. I had severe pain in both heels, Achilles tendon, big toe and and extremely swollen left ankle. I went to the podiatrist and tried everything under the sun, for months, including cortisone shots, physical therapy, braces, etc. and nothing worked. I had to stop working as a waitress because it got to the point where I couldn't walk anymore and I was desperate for a solution. I started working an office job so I could be off my feet.

Finally I had a blood test, and it was determined that I had severe arthritis and I would have to be on medicine that had a lot of horrible side-effects, for the rest of my life. During the time I was on Sulfasalazine I began to lose concentration at work. I couldn't think straight and I had no appetite whatsoever. I had to go on short-term disability because I couldn't work. Luckily, after the medicine was out of my system, I was back to normal and returned to work. I was now on three pills a day of Indomethacin, an anti-inflammatory drug, along with medicine to counteract its harshness on my stomach.

I began my journey with acupuncture December 2011. I started feeling better by Feb 2012, and my pain was now at night mainly. With Dawn's suggestions, by the end of February, I started changing my diet from fast foods and desserts to an elimination diet to rule out any foods that could be causing my flare-ups. We discovered that refined sugar caused flare-ups, and I used to eat tons of sugar filled foods each day. In mid-May my blood work showed my sed rate (which measures inflammation) went down from 1200 to 7! At the end of July, I started weening off of my medication and by the end of September I was off my medication completely. I wasn't on any medication and I no longer had any pain. I am so grateful to have found Dawn and everyday I am thankful to be walking around normally without pain. I strongly encourage you to try acupuncture with Dawn for a safe, healthy way to to get well. 

- Melissa J., Clearwater, FL

Asthma:

I came to see Dawn in July of 2008 I was in pretty bad shape physically and mentally. I have been treated by Medical Doctors for 15 years without improvements and certain aspects were regressing. I have problems with my lungs, kidneys, prostate and circulation. The doctors keep prescribing medicine which have not improved any of my conditions. I damaged my spine when I was in Law Enforcement and the doctors wanted to give me pain killers. When I was hospitalized they wanted to give me morphine. How long would it take for me to become addicted - I was trying to tough it out but life was going down hill.

Dawn started to give me acupuncture treatments and the pain subsided almost immediately, she also prescribed Chinese herbs which have made me feel so much better. She helped me work out a food plan and my breathing is greatly improved! I am feeling 100% better and the quality of my life is greatly improved. I will be forever thankful to Dawn and the things that she was able to do for me. I wish that I had found Dawn - acupuncture and Chinese herbs years ago.

Thank you, thank you, Dawn. Keep up the good work.

- Marvin L., Spring Hill, FL

Autism Spectrum Disorder:

I started seeing Dr. Dawn for my personal health (allergies, back pain). She has been a wonderful doctor for me - kind, compassionate and, most importantly, effective. But Dawn has offered me and my family so much more.

If you are a parent seeking a way to help your child who may have developmental issues or nervous system issues (ADHD, sensory issues), Dr. Dawn's knowledge and expertise may give you the help, support and answers for which you have been searching. In this country, we are unaccustomed to Eastern medicine so you may be skeptical. How can herbs and acupuncture possibly work? And if it does work, why isn't everyone in the medical community sharing this knowledge? I can't answer that second question. I am amazed at the resistance the Western medical community gives to what they consider to be alternative treatments. I am here to tell you that Dr. Dawn's therapies have worked for both me and my son, Adam. For you parents who are searching - this is your sign.

My son was diagnosed with a receptive and expressive speech delay around the age of two. This means that not only did he have problems speaking, he also had trouble understanding words and meaning. He was later diagnosed with a mild sensory processing disorder. For him, this means that he is a sensory-seeking kid. He is very "rough and tumble." He needs the physical sensation of jumping, sometimes running into things, etc. To the layperson, it might seem that he is just "all boy." That is true, but there is more to it.

Dr. Dawn has been invaluable in her direction on supplements, herbs and foods that not only helped to keep Adam well but also flourishing in his development. It was only from Dawn that I learned of infant/toddler probiotics that keeps Adam's immune system strong. (When I mentioned to our pediatrician that I believed the probiotics had kept Adam from getting recurring ear infections she said, "Oh yeah, I give that to my kids." HELLO? Why don't you bother to mention this to your PATIENTS?).

It is from Dr. Dawn that I learned about giving Adam omega 3-6-9 oil as a supplement for brain development. Now we also give him lemon flavored cod liver oil as well. Finally, it is from Dawn that I learned about Liver Life. These are herbal drops that have helped Adam become more calm and focused. Also, after taking the Liver Life herbal drops for just a few days, Adam's teachers and others reported an increase in his expressive speech and greater understanding. Adam has always made steady, positive progress with his speech. However, this was a true breakthrough for us.

Given my interaction with my son's Western doctors and therapists and with Dr. Dawn, this is what I know: Western medical philosophy seems to state that where developmental and neurological delays are concerned, "there is something wrong with the brain, so we must retrain the brain to work properly" through speech and behavioral therapies, etc. Eastern medical philosophy seems to state "there is nothing wrong with the brain but something is off with the body that keeps the brain from functioning properly and we will clear the body." I cannot say that Adam has not benefited from speech therapy -- he has and I am grateful. But we would not have seen this extent of progress without Dr. Dawn. Adam is now on track to attend typical Kindergarten in 2010.

- Jennifer B., Safety Harbor, FL

Low Back Pain:

In July, 2010 I hit rock bottom.  I was in tremendous pain, using a walker to sit in and push myself around.  I was taking so much medicine that I was forgetting things, had gained over 50 lbs, and was extremely depressed.  I was under a doctor’s care but the pain had consumed my life and I was scared I was dying.  A friend suggested acupuncture but I was leery.  I finally searched for acupuncturist in the Clearwater Area and found Dr. Dawn Balusik.  I read several of the testimonials and gave her a call. My daughter went with me on my first visit.  Dr. Dawn gave us a print-out discussing all my medicines and the possible side-effects.  She explained that acupuncture by itself would not help me…that I needed to exercise (in the pool) and change my diet.  I decided I had nothing to lose but pain and weight.  That was four months ago…..I have lost 51 lbs, eliminated 80% of my medicines, with both doctor’s help, and am almost pain free!!   Please don’t waste time wondering if she can help you…..call her today!

- Peggy D., Tarpon Springs, FL

In October of 2006, I was in a car accident and suffered 2 herniated discs in my lower lumbar region. I had been trying for years to get rid of the lower back pain that I was suffering from but to no avail. The past 4 years, I have had various treatments from Chiropractic manipulation every week to 3 epidural injections plus pain medication. Nothing helped to eliminate my discomfort. I went to see "Acupuncture By Dawn" to undergo acupuncture treatment in September 2010 after reading many articles about this alternative therapy. From the moment I stepped into her warm and inviting office , I knew I had made the right decision. I have to say that I am very happy with the results after 4 months of treatment. I couldn't believe it, having been in pain for so long, and tried so many different treatments. Overall, not only has my pain of my lower back improved, but my energy levels and sense of well being has improved also. It truly is amazing.

- Cynthia W., Clearwater, FL

I am a 39 year old firefighter paramedic and I have a herniated disc at the L5/S1 level of my spine.(low back) I injured my back and saw several traditional doctors looking for solutions. My pain lingered for over a year. I tried physical therapy, medications, spine injections, chiropractic, and massage. NOTHING helped. My pain interfered with daily activities. I could not even do simple tasks around my house without paying the price of pain. Several "specialists" told me I needed surgery. Two "specialists" told me I would just have to live with the pain. UNACCEPTABLE!

A friend of mine at church suggested I go see Dr. Dawn. I was very skeptical but I went as a last resort. I truly was desperate. Dawn did her thing and after the first visit I felt 80 percent better. Visit number 2, I was 99 percent better. Visit number 3, 100 percent! It has been 4 years since my last treatment and I have not had ANY pain since. The reason it took me 4 years to write this testimonial is because I wanted to make sure that what Dawn did was not a temporary fix. Keep in mind, I had major pain everyday for over a year and no other doctors could help me. Now, I lift weights, run, surf, play sports, coach soccer, lift patients, hold my children, and enjoy life without pain!
Thank you Dr. Dawn for giving me my life back.

- Randy C., Palm Harbor, FL

Low Back Pain / Sciatica:

The condition that Dawn Balusik helped me with:  Intense sciatic pain, including pain from the hip to calf and numbness in the left foot. Secondary pain in both knees from torn meniscus and osteoarthritis.

How long I had this condition before seeing Dawn: eight months. 

How severe it was: I have a high tolerance for pain; however, this was an 8-10 on a scale of 10 at some point in each day, with the lowest constant pain at 2-3 on a scale of 10.  There was no relief throughout the eight months. 

Did it limit me from activities: When the high pain levels hit, I was immobile. At times there was no comfortable position that I could tolerate. It had an adverse impact on my job, as I could not sit for long perioids [I am an author who writes 8-10 hour daily] and had trouble traveling through airports to fulfill my teaching schedule. 

Other treatments I had tried before seeing Dawn: My primary doctor prescribed nerve-inhibitor medication, which I was hesitant to take, as my belief is that such meds do nothing but mask the symptoms and do nothing to treat the underlying cause. I also had weeks of physical therapy, including nerve stimulation; however that only provided temporary relief for a few hours to a day or two. 

How Dawn has helped me: I intuitively felt the right answer for me would be acupuncture and Chinese herbs, although I had never tried either in the past. A friend recommended another acupuncturist, where I had three treatments, but was uneasy with the practitioner who was very abrupt and tried to upsell Western vitamins in lieu of Chinese herbs. I then did an internet search and found Dawn. We both hail from Ohio, so I took that as a "sign" and scheduled my first appointment. 

Dawn is a genuinely caring person, who asks the right questions and is responsive to patients' needs. I began with twice-weekly sessions for two weeks, then reduced to weekly, and no go bi-weekly. The sciatic pain completely receded within 6-8 treatments.  We are now working on my knees, which are also much better. Due to the nature of my job, I spend protracted periods at the computer - in peak periods, as much as 16-18 hours oer day, 7 days a week of non-stop legal research and textbook writing. Because of that, I plan on continuing bi-weekly treatments throughout the peak period, to keep on top of any residual pain that might want to reappear. I am also taking Chinese herbs for a couple of conditions - inflammation and pre-hypertension, as well as a daily probiotic. 

I would heartily recommend that others give Dawn a try.

- Karen K., Palm Harbor, FL

Treatment for my condition began 10-17-07 after having had moderate to severe pain in my right leg since early July. The pain was caused by a pinched sciatic nerve. I initially sought treatment from my primary care physician. My daily routine consisted of a 12 hr. work schedule which caused significant pain followed by pain relievers at bedtime and starting the cycle over again the next day. My physician referred me to his colleague in pain management. I tried 2 pain relievers as well as steroids and medication for nerve pain. These provided some temporary relief. Since rest and medication had minimal and temporary effect we moved to the next level. I had steroid nerve block injections in the involved spinal area. This again provided some relief, however I still had significant pain.

While getting treatment a family member related my situation to Dr. Balusik who indicated the she had recently started using a new acupuncture technique for this kind of condition. I had treatment and almost immediately the pain was gone. Two additional treatments by Dr. Balusik produced complete relief. I had sought treatment from Dr. Balusik on previous occasions for other maladies so I was familiar with acupuncture and therapeutic massage but this treatment method produced significant and virtually immediate relief.

Since lower back pain is one of the most common problems for which people seek relief. I would certainly recommend a visit to Dr. Balusik for treatment using the Tan Balance method as a first option.

I am a health care professional who had some initial skepticism about acupuncture but the results have been significant to the extent that medication is no longer necessary and the debilitating effects of the pain are gone.

To be treated in an atmosphere of compassion and concern for the whole person is an option I will certainly be using again. Dr. Balusik treats the whole person. She explains her methods and the intended results. She does not denigrate your previous experiences. She simply offers treatment and the results speak for themselves.

- Dennis T., Palm Harbor, FL

I began treatment with Dawn Balusik in Oct 2004. I had been suffering from sciatica since May, and had been to my doctor, was taking the maximum amount of Motrin daily, and going to physical therapy, with no results. I was unable to sleep in my bed, unable to shave my legs or cut my toenails, and woke up most mornings in great pain.

I noticed a difference in the way I felt after only a couple of treatments, and was totally symptom-free by the end of the treatment period. I have a lot of faith in Dawn's abilities, as she has helped me in many ways. At the start of the flu season, she gave me herbs to take each morning, and I am the only one in my family who didn't get sick. I am currently having a problem with my shoulder, and when I get acupuncture I get relief from the pain, am healing nicely, and I'm sure that with a few more treatments, this too will be a thing of the past. My thanks to Dawn for using her extensive knowledge and training to make me well.

- Janet P., Holiday, FL

Middle Back Pain:

Several years ago I had a  severe back injury to my middle back, that also affected my lower back and neck. I could not even stand up straight. My general practitioner prescribed muscle relaxers and pain meds but those did not fix the problem, but only masked the real issue. I tried Chiropractic care for many years, and it did help some, but it did not correct the muscle issue, for my injury was not  structural, so I was still in considerable pain. I was introduced to acupuncture as an alternative pain/wellness treatment.

After the first treatment, I felt great improvement! I have been able to control my back pain since the first visit to Dawn's practice.  I have seen continual improvement after each subsequent visit and haven't had to return to chiropractic or massage therapy care since starting treatment with Dawn. I have also noticed the improvement in my overall health since taking up acupuncture.

- Ken M., Clearwater, FL

 Upper Back Pain:

Dr. Dawn,
Thank you so much for the excellent treatment for my upper back pain. As we discussed, I have disc issues at C-6 and C-7. One doctor, a few years back, said surgery was the only cure. I was not too keen on that. My flare up this summer caused me to do some research into some other options. I had decided I would try acupuncture as a last ditch effort prior to any surgical procedures. I found you on the internet and, once I fully understood all of your certifications, decided to give you a try.

You might remember I was not yet a believer and was like “I am not sure about this but I will try anything.” Some friends were quite supportive and others were very much into thinking I had decided on some kind of voodoo. I was in-between. I am now a fervent believer. When we started, my severe pain was gone but I still had pain lingering and I was not doing normal activities. I was a daily user of Advil. Getting in and out of bed was a tedious process to make sure I would not set my pain off again. Within two treatments I was feeling much better and I decided I needed to start living normally again and doing my normal activities. A few times I would feel a light burning, but if I would immediately move a position or adjust my body, within seconds it would go away.

Now after 4 treatments, I am on a maintenance schedule, I am doing everything and, except rare occasions, never feel any burning. What little burning sensation I do get quickly goes away with a slight posture adjustment; like my body is telling me to get in the proper position. I think if I had not had the pain this summer I would not even notice, just the normal day to day muscles stretching, etc. The only Advil taken since our start has been for sinus type headache and that has only been a couple of times.

I now tell everyone that if they have pain or some of the other conditions that acupuncture works well for they need to try it. I am a big supporter and would highly recommend this to anyone. It is amazing.

Thank you.
- Mike M., Clearwater, FL

Bell's Palsy:

My name is Nicole B., I am 31 years old. On July 12, 2009 I woke up to the right side of my face feeling tingly, by noon it was paralyzed. I went to the hospital and was diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy. The doctor told me it could take anywhere from a couple of weeks to a year to heal. They gave me a prescription for Valtrex and a steroid.

I looked like I’d had a stroke. I had to sleep with a patch over my eye because it could not close on its own. After a week of no results and researching alternative cures, I decided to try acupuncture.

Dawn was recommended to me by my sister-in-law. By the time of my appointment, I had finished the medications the doctor had prescribed: not only had I not seen any improvement, but the area directly behind my ear began aching, and the right side of my face began to ache like it was completely bruised.

After discussing my situation with Dawn, she said she thought we could “knock it out” in about six sessions. The morning after my first appointment, I could blink my eye and move a portion of my mouth. My facial motion had come back by 50%, and the pain behind my ear lessened. After my second appointment, the following morning, I had 90% of my facial movement back, I could smile. The pain behind my ear was even less and my face did not ache as much. By my fifth appointment my face was 100% back to normal, the pain behind my ear was completely gone, and the facial pain was minimal. My total treatment time was about 3 weeks.

- Nicole B., Tarpon Springs, FL

Cancer Support:

To visit our Cancer Support page, click here.  

Diarrhea:

Dear Dawn, you saved my trip! As you know, I had been fighting severe intestinal problems for two weeks when I came to you. My Doctor's advise was to "eat what you want, you're going to be miserable for quite a while, your system will eventually get back to normal, but I don't recommend you get on a plane this week!" In addition to that, his tests showed nothing. I was afraid to leave home and I made it to your office in desperation after 5 straight days of being housebound.

During the acupuncture treatment I could feel my system calming down for the first time in two weeks. The very next day I was able to handle a 9-hour trip (including a delayed flight which caused a missed connection and a long wait). The herbs you prescribed have continued to keep my system manageable and comfortable. I am still amazed at the difference you made. Thank you so much for restoring my quality of life and for helping me to be with my parents on a very special day.

You are incredible!

- Meredith F., Tampa, FL

Diverticulitis:

My name is Barbara and I am a Registered Nurse. I have a long history of diverticulitis with intermittent mild attacks for the past 14 years. Other than that, I have enjoyed extremely good health. On November 1, 2005, I was awakened in the middle of the night with excruciating Lower Left Quadrant (abdomen) pain, backache, and fever. I was in bed for 3 days and over the next 2 weeks slowly felt better but had not regained my energy or usual feeling of good health.

On November 17th I had my first appointment with Dawn Balusik. Dawn assessed my body and I received my first acupuncture treatment.. Over the next 3 weeks I saw her weekly, took the prescribed herbs and homeopathic compounds and by the third week the Left Lower Quadrant pain had subsided, my gastrointestinal functioning had returned to normal and my energy had returned. It is now the second week in January and while I continue treatment every 3 weeks, I finally feel like my old self. I am thrilled at my recovery rate via Dawn's expertise and without the use of drugs or more invasive types of treatment.

Sincerely,

- Barbara S., Palm Harbor, FL

Dizziness:

I am a 2x breast cancer survivor, 1999 and 2004. I've had episodes of severe dizziness in 1996 and again in 2003. In 2003 the symptoms were somewhat resolved with a long-term detox program. In early summer 2005 I had significant episodes of dizziness. I went to a general practice MD who was stumped after a brain MRI, blood tests, etc. I asked the MD what she thought of acupuncture and if it was worth a try. The MD stated that she did not fully understand it but that she had known of positive results. We agreed I would try acupuncture prior to the battery of tilt table tests.

I was referred to Dawn Balusik's office by a friend. Dawn and I discussed my history and she recommended I try acupuncture / massage and two herbal blends. When I asked Dawn if acupuncture would work for the dizziness she believed there was a good possibility, but I would know for sure after a few treatments. After 2 or 3 treatments the dizziness was minimized. After a month or so of once a week treatments the symptoms have been resolved. I now have a treatment once a month and will work with Dawn to determine the frequency of treatments in the future. I will continue the simple herbal regime (less then 1/8 of teaspoon in AM). Dawn has also been working with me to resolve a sports-related hip flexor soreness.

- Lisa H., Clearwater, FL

Endometriosis:

After a laparoscopy to treat endometriosis, my menstrual cramps actually got worse. Much worse. Every month, I would experience crippling pain that was so bad, I'd be bedridden for days and had to take prescription-strength painkillers. Out of desperation, I started to see Dawn for treatments. After approximately 3-4 months of treatments, I'm relatively painfree (just very mild cramps). I am amazed what Dawn has done for me, with the acupuncture treatments and herbal medicine. My life is finally back to normal, and I no longer dread my monthly cycles.

Thank you Dawn.

- Jenna K., Clearwater, FL

I began seeing Dawn when I decided to stop using synthetic hormones to control my endometriosis. After over 15 years manipulating my own hormones with western medicine, my body had had enough and I had basically run out of options other than more surgery.

While the transition off of drugs was not an easy one, I am happy to say that my pain seems to be mostly under control and I do not foresee having to have more surgery in the near future. I have no doubt that if Dawn were not treating me, I would still be in a significant amount of pain.

Dawn has also become a caring friend over the years, and takes the time to really listen about what's going on with my body. I can't recommend her enough!

- Emily P., Clearwater, FL

For more testimonials regarding endometriosis, please see the Infertility Page, as many cases of infertility are related to endometriosis.

Fibromyalgia:

I would like to give testimony for whatever purpose you can use it, to encourage others who may be suffering from the pain I was dealing with before coming to see you.

I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia several years ago, and also osteoarthritis. Both these diseases were treated by physicians with pain medications, some operations, and nothing else, for years. My symptoms were all-over pain, more severe pain in certain areas, fatigue, and fluid retention, as well as irritable bowel and digestive issues with constipation. The situation was wearing me down emotionally as well as physically, thus, I sought alternative therapy in acupuncture. I must admit, I was unsure that there would be a lot of success.

Over the course of my visits with you, these issues were addressed, treatment was begun, and I experienced some relief with even my first visit. When I first came to see you, I was unable to walk for exercise, which is needed with managing fibromyalgia. I felt older than my age, and that I was destined to do less and less because of all the pain and inflammation I was experiencing.

The treatment you give has alleviated all of my digestive issues and water retention; and the pain in my back, for which I was about to seek pain management, is so much reduced that I can hardly believe it. I can walk again for exercise. I feel so much better everywhere, that I feel I have a new lease on life. I am 62 years old, and feel that I can again be productive in my life, and not have my days centered around pain relief and suffering through the day.

Herbs were adjusted as my needs changed, and the real benefits came after several months of therapy. I was not always able to come for treatment as often as I needed to, so it took longer to get full relief.

My treatments leave me calmer and more at peace in the moment, but the effects of the pain relief last much longer than that and are cumulative, building upon one another. I have gone from being a skeptic to a firm believer in the benefits of acupuncture. It is important to get the right therapist, and you listen well and have given good advice and treatment, for which I am very grateful.

- Judith H., Clearwater, FL

Foot Pain:

I went to Dawn Balusik about 9 months ago. The bottoms of my feet, especially the front ½ of them, were very sore to walk on, almost to the point of limping. She took a thorough history and listened to what I said. She proceeded to treat me with acupuncture and herbal supplements. I was extremely hopeful after the 1st treatment. It didn’t take long nor cost a fortune for my foot pain to resolve. They have remained asymptomatic. I would definitely go back for other physical ailments/conditions as I’m a firm believer in its effectiveness and Dawn Balusik’s knowledge, skill, and professionalism.

- Laura T., Crystal Beach, FL

Hand Pain:

In August I decided to try acupuncture on my hands, which were swollen and painful, with little movement.  Dawn Balusik worked on my hands, but the first 6 treatments did not seem to be helping.  Further treatment brought the swelling down and shifted the pain from the palms to the fingers.  Treatment is now complete, after 12 sessions, and my hands are pain-free and back to normal.  I am glad I did not seek conventional medical help, but tried acupuncture first.

- E. A. H., Ozona, FL

Hip Bursitis Pain:

My name is Lynn. I had bursitis in both hips for several months after doing a lot of walking on a vacation. Ouch! It hurt to sit, stand, walk, lie in bed at night - all the things I took for granted. Aleve didn't provide me much relief and I didn't want a steroid injection, as I don't like needles!

I was fortunate enough to meet Dawn on a recent visit to Florida and decided to give acupuncture a try - me, the woman who is afraid of needles. I met with Dawn on April 2, 2010. She took a lot of time taking my history and explaining what she was going to do, and really put me at ease. Her manner is very calming and office setting is super comfortable and serene. I was a little anxious about the acupuncture, but had no discomfort from it at all, and it sure felt better than having the hip pain all the time.

I noticed a gradual improvement in my bursitis after the first and second sessions, and by the third and fourth treatments, my discomfort declined remarkably. In addition to acupuncture, Dawn did massage, gave me an herbal medicine to take in place of Aleve and medicated plasters to apply to the hip area, all of which contributed to an improvement in my pain. I was able to walk, exercise, and go shopping again!

I'm back in Wisconsin now and continue to improve. I'm grateful to have met Dawn, glad I decided to give acupuncture a try, and would encourage anyone to give it a chance.

- Lynn D., Wisconsin

Infertility:

To visit our Fertility page, click here.

Knee Pain:

Thanks so much for the excellent care you have given me and the improvement you have brought to the quality of my life.

Arthritis in my knees had progressed to the point that I had daily pain. My favorite hobby of dancing was becoming a tortuous experience that seemed to be living out its final days. I pursued help from an orthopedic doctor who saw me as an early candidate for knee replacements. I liked the doctor very much and felt that he was well qualified in his field. The treatments included regularly draining large amounts of fluid from my knees (due to inflammation) and repeated steroid injections. These brought immediate but temporary relief, and then within weeks the pain returned to being worse than before the treatment.

The last treatment was a newer product that involved weekly injections for several weeks and then was expected to provide relief for a year or longer. Only weeks after the injections were over my condition had returned to the same level of severe pain and limitation. I was preparing myself to give up dancing.

I spent an evening researching treatment for Arthritis in the knees on the internet and read convincing statements that Acupuncture was a successful therapy. I found Dawn Balusik’s website on the internet nearby my residence and my recovery began. Within two weeks I could tell the treatment was having a positive affect on my condition. After four weeks of weekly treatment I experienced significant improvement. After about ten weeks I became pain-free. This improvement was experienced even though I remained active throughout.

I have returned to a full routine of fitness and dancing. Even during the most physically demanding periods I experience only occasional, minimal discomfort. I can dance for hours and completely forget that I have arthritis. I whole-heartedly recommend Acupuncture for anyone suffering from Arthritis in their knees.
Thanks again Dawn,

- Jon B., Clearwater, FL

Meniere's Disease:

September 2006 was when I decided to try acupuncture for hearing loss due to Meniere's disease.

In May 2005, I started to experience significant hearing loss and thought it was earwax build-up or some kind of infection. Seeking treatment through my primary healthcare provider, she referred me to an ear specialist. They diagnosed it as Meniere's disease and recommended steroids to help with the inflammation.

Steroids helped. However, my life was miserable and I suffered every single side effect from the steroids. As I was weaned off the steroids, my hearing failed again.

Seeking a second opinion, I went to another ear specialist and got the same feedback. Steroid maintenance. No good. This doctor put me on a diuretic to help sodium build-up; he said I would have to be on it for the rest of my life too.

Not wanting to be on steroids for the rest of my life, I decided to seek alternative medicine. Dr. Balusik was referred to me through a friend. I made an appointment and was given an acupuncture treatment and 2 types of herbal medicine. I started getting results a week later. It took nearly five months of treatments before I felt back to normal.

Sometimes I suffer from dizzy spells and minor hearing loss. However, I've never gone back to the condition I was in before: significant hearing loss, unable to hear certain sounds, having to ask people to repeat themselves several times, not wanting to listen to music or talk on the phone, being worried that I wouldn’t hear my alarm clock, and feeling alone, isolated and depressed.

I recommend Eastern medicine instead of Western medicine because it is a permanent solution. Western medicine did not treat my illness, it just masked my symptoms. Western medicine also created additional problems. Eastern medicine treated my illness. It didn’t happen overnight, but it took me forty years to develop this condition in the first place. Comparatively, five months is not long.

Eating right is key to good health, so I learned through Dr. Balusik. I now avoid certain foods. I eat more whole foods. Feeling better and weight loss was the result of that. Yippee!

Currently I am in good health, and my hearing is so much better. I am now seeing Dr. Balusik to get off of the diuretic that I was put on as that “medicine” has weakened my kidneys. The results are amazingly quick. Thank you Dr. Balusik.

- Catherine D., Clearwater, FL

Migraine Headaches:

I started acupuncture in October 2007, after my second epileptic seizure, which resulted in post-concussion syndrome with migraine headaches. The headaches would start mildly each morning and progressively get worse until they became excruciating by evening. The doctors increased medication that only created lethargy, diminished my appetite, and created an ability to sleep 16 hours daily. Any stress sent me into a pounding migraine.

A good friend recommended Dr. Dawn. She analyzed my medical profile very carefully and treated me immediately with my first acupuncture session on the first appointment. Within two appointments, my headaches started to feel less intense, much like their rough edge were being sanded down. By the end of the year, my headaches are infrequent and manageable by aspirin. I highly recommend Dr. Dawn’s gentle methods of practice to anyone in need of pain management.

- Susan H., Tampa, FL

My name is Erica Barrera, and as of March 2010 I have been treated by Dawn Balusik for migraines for 7 months. I have had migraines since childhood that gradually worsened and became unbearable after the birth of my second child 5 years ago. At that time I was experiencing 10-13 migraines per month. My symptoms included excruciating pulsatile head pain, neck rigidity, sensitivity to noise and light, and nausea. Every aspect of my life was affected by the pain, and I felt I was missing out on life. Two different neurologists treated me over the past 5 years. I take Imitrex as an abortive drug, but prevention was the key. I tried the preventative medications Topimax, Verapamil , Frova, and oral contraceptives. One drug induced a serious reaction, and the others were of little help with many side effects. As my doctor referred me to a third neurologist, I decided to explore acupuncture instead.

Dawn took a thorough history and formulated a plan of treatment including diet modifications, herbal therapy, and acupuncture. After 2 months of weekly acupuncture, I was experiencing less intense migraines that were more responsive to Imitrex. Sometimes the migraine would subside with an extra dose of herbs and sleep. By January 2010, the migraines were becoming less frequent and less intense even during my “high-risk” times. Seven months into my treatment with Dawn, my migraines are better controlled than at any other time in my life. I take my herbs daily and keep my Imitrex on hand, but happily I have only taken Imitrex once in the past 11 weeks. I never thought this day would come and had all but given up. I still experience mild migraine symptoms at times, and I struggle to keep my migraine triggers in check. Thanks to my treatment with Dawn, however, I have made incredible progress and have enjoyed so many pain-free days. I only wish I had considered acupuncture and herbal therapy as my first line of treatment.

- Erica B., Oldsmar, FL

Neck Pain:

I started seeing Dawn Balusik in November 2005 for chronic neck pain. I suffered from whiplash: I had neck pain during the day, and a hard time getting comfortable to sleep. I had been on pain medicines, gone to physical therapy, and was also seeing a chiropractor, which gave me some relief.

I, however, felt that I was only masking the problem, and the pain would always return. After having acupuncture treatments with Dawn Balusik for two months, I am now free of neck pain and only go for maintenance treatments. She made me feel very comfortable and the treatments are painless and very relaxing. I believe in Oriental Medicine because it treats a person from the inside. I will always incorporate acupuncture into my lifestyle of staying healthy and pain free.

- Renee C., Clearwater, FL

I am writing this to tell what I have experienced with the treatments that Dr. Dawn has given me. I had heard of acupuncture before, but I was never sure I would want to go with that kind of treatment. I have had a lot of stiffness and discomfort in my neck for about a year. It just seemed to get worse as time went on. In January I heard about Dawn Balusik, so I thought I would give her a call and talk to her about my problem. I was very impressed talking to her, so I decided I would try the treatment and follow exactly her recommendations. On Jan 23, 2010 I had my first treatment. After the 3rd treatment I could feel a slight improvement. After each additional treatment with Dr. Dawn, I felt more and more relief. I have had 8 treatments now, and I feel better than I have felt in over a year, with much less stiffness, and more ability to turn and move my head without discomfort.

- Lowell M., Clearwater, FL

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD):

My name is Hazmin F. I have been [getting acupuncture] for about 2 years now. I have been going to Dawn Balusik for probably the last 8 months. I have RSD. For me that only means pain. Pain in my arm. Pain in my hand. In my shoulders. In my back. I injured my right wrist and arm in 2003. I saw a physical therapist for a year, had 2 cortisone shots and then had surgery. That escalated into RSD, which spiraled the pain out of control, and I STILL had no use of my hand, which was what the surgery was for.

I was on Bextra, Vicadin, the highest dosage of Advil. My orthopedist gave up on me and referred me to pain management, where they recommended a series of nerve block injections in my neck that would basically shut down the nervous system, hoping it would "reboot" and the RSD would go away. When I refused, he recommended Neurontin, an anti-seizure drug. I refused, so he recommended Gabitril, a milder anti-seizure drug. When I asked how long I would have to be on it, he said "forever"; I refused - making it only the third time in my life I said "No" to a recommended treatment by a Western-based physician.

That's when I left and made an appointment for acupuncture, which was recommended to me by a friend. Before my treatments, I couldn't cook. I couldn't braid my daughter's hair. I couldn't fold clothes. I couldn't even cut my own food. I typed only with my left hand (a real pain). I gave up on my passion - playing the piano.

Now I can do most everything, as long as I keep things in moderation. I planted a bromeliad garden with my daughter this weekend - What joy! I was sore for a day, but today, I am typing this note WITH BOTH HANDS. I know I wouldn't be at the level of recovery that I am without the acupuncture and massage.

I can't express enough my appreciation not only for the holistic approach and the amazing intuitiveness and expertise, but also for the tremendous amount of care and love that goes into the treatments. I love Dawn's quiet strength. Of all the methods of treatment I have received at that office, I think my body has responded the most to her massage, cupping and gua sha. I say that, but acupuncture has been wonderful, along with the Chinese herbs I have used along the way. I rely on Dawn's expertise week to week to recommend the treatment needed, and just watch with amazement how my body responds and heals to her touch.

- Hazmin F., Palm Harbor, FL

Tendinitis / Wrist Pain:

I started treatment with Dawn Balusik, AP, DOM, LMT on October 5, 2005. I had tendinitis in my right wrist, shortly after my Carpal Tunnel surgery. My doctor said I would need another surgery to take care of it. I did not want to have another surgery.

I had the problem for about a month before I came to see Dawn Balusik. A friend told me about her and how she helped her. I made an appointment to see Dawn. I could not write or play golf (which I enjoy very much.) Dawn gave me my first treatment on Oct 5, 2005. After six treatments I started to be able to at least start writing with no pain. Four more treatments later I was out playing golf and doing things without pain.

Dawn Balusik also does treatment for my sinuses, with which I have had a problem with for years. Now I take herbs for my sinuses with some acupuncture treatments. I also told Dawn about my migraines. She said she would be able to help me with them. She did help by a few treatments and I now take herbs for them. It is so great not having migraines. I have told many friends about Dawn and how she's helped me in so many ways. Some of my friends are thinking about using her. I hope they do because she is very good in all she does.

- Sharon B., Clearwater, FL

After suffering with recurring severe wrist pain (tendinitis) for approximately seven years, I enlisted the help of Dawn Balusik in the Spring of 2008 and began a series of acupuncture treatments.

My tendinitis developed from a sports injury, and had only gotten worse through the years. I had not been able to golf, play basketball, go fishing, or partake in any other sport or heavy lifting, except on the rare occasion that my wrist pain was tolerable.

I had had enough of various doctors telling me there was no cure for what ailed me, other than to simply "not use" my wrist and hand at all for a lengthy period of time. Furthermore, I was tired of being prescribed dangerous medications, including steroids, all having horrible side effects. I put up with this condition for so long, I was beginning to accept that I may have to deal with it forever.

Finally, with a big golf tournament on the horizon (and my wrist feeling as bad as ever), I decided to try something a little less conventional: acupuncture. I had heard of acupuncture, but had never known anyone who used it. I had three or four treatments with Dr. Dawn over two months.

I am thrilled that after only those few sessions, my wrist pain is almost non-existent. I am playing the best golf of my life, and better yet, can lift and play with my son! I have seen Dr. Dawn only once in the year-and-a-half since my initial treatments, for a follow- up due to an aggravating injury of my own fault. She took care of this in one visit.

I would encourage anyone who has grown weary of "conventional" medicine to give Dr. Dawn's acupuncture a try. She is reasonable, displays care to and spends time with her patients, and best of all, delivers results!

- Eric Spaulding, Clearwater, FL

Ulcerative Colitis:

I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in August of 2010.  I lived with the symptoms of this terrible disease for a year and two months until I decided I needed to take my health into my own hands. 

My doctor told me I would never be cured but would be able to mask the symptoms with different medications.  My quality of life was terrible! My stomach hurt all the time, I was always bloated from the medication, and never had a normal bowel movement (went to the bathroom 10-20 times a day.)  I didn’t go anywhere unless I knew exactly where the bathroom was.  Accidents became a way of life and honestly quite humiliating to deal with as an adult. 

I started doing research and reading books on the people who had been successful with diet change and acupuncture.  I decided this was my next step.

So October 1, 2011 I called Dawn to schedule an appointment and wanted to come in right away.  She was extremely kind and attentive and asked many questions covering my entire health profile.  She commended my newly altered diet change (gluten-free and organic).  She said that diet change is something she recommends to people in my situation.  She also told me to take the herbs she gave me as well as a probiotic.  I saw her for acupuncture treatment every week. 

I started seeing an immediate improvement just after the first two weeks.  My trips to the bathroom were much less frequent.  Dawn was very thorough with the acupuncture method and adjusting my herbs weekly based on my improvement.

After just 3 months I was completely symptom free!  I will never forget on Christmas I was at my parents’ house with my husband, eating everything offered for Christmas dinner and I felt great.  My whole family told me how healthy and vibrant I looked and everyone could see a noticeable change.  I hadn’t felt that great in years!  I've gradually started adding gluten back into my diet and I am happy to say I am still completely symptom-free.  I still go see Dawn once a week and I probably will for the rest of my life.

-Melissa S., Palm Harbor, FL

When I first went to see Dawn Balusik in December 2007 I was suffering from a recently diagnosed case of Ulcerative Colitis. My doctor had me taking numerous medications, including corticosteroids, which were masking my symptoms. I also was suffering from numerous side effects. I started seeing Dawn every two weeks for acupuncture and herb therapy.

I could feel the difference after I started Dawn Balusik’s treatments. I had more strength and energy, which previously had been drained by the steroid treatments. My stomach pain diminished and my colitis symptoms disappeared.

I chose to stop my medication within a couple months, despite the urges of my doctor. I maintained my acupuncture and herb schedule and have been symptom-free for over two years.

My colitis and the subsequent medications led to other health issues like joint pain, weight gain and tendonitis. Dawn's treatments help every aspect of my health. There is a noticeable difference in my joint pain after I leave a session, and the effects usually last for two weeks or more.

I had a difficult time losing the weight the steroids caused me to gain and could not shed a pound until I spoke to Dawn about the issue. Although this concern was insignificant compared to my health problems, she assisted me in finding an herb treatment that would help with the weight loss.

Dawn Balusik’s approach to my problems was personal and cautious. My doctor had treated me in a textbook manner, and that backfired as I reacted poorly to the strong drugs. Despite only being on the steroids for six months, I developed bone and vision issues, which led to more treatments including cataract surgery at age 19. Dr. Balusik treated me, not my illness, and I think it is because of that approach that I am as healthy as I am today.

- Hannah U., Palm Harbor, FL

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