Acupuncture has grown tremendously in popularity in the United States and for good reason. It works. It can help reduce pain and has a regulatory effect on the body which means better health, improved digestion, more balanced hormones, stronger immune system, better mood, and less anxiety.
Here are some facts about Acupuncture:
- Acupuncture needles are extremely thin, approximately 10 times thinner than the needles used at your doctor’s office. So in most cases you will hardly feel the needles!
- All needles are sterile and single-use only. Meaning we never re-use any needles.
- Acupuncture is a form of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that has been around for at least 2,500 years.
- The needles are placed at various acupuncture points on the body to stimulate the body’s self-healing mechanism.
- Recent studies have shown that acupuncture needles communicate with the body to send signals to the brain causing the brain to secrete chemicals such as opioid peptides, endorphins, and enkephalins.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) lists over 30 different disorders that can be helped by acupuncture and Chinese Medicine. The National Institute of Health (NIH) have also endorsed acupuncture for certain conditions.
- Acupuncture has a very high safety profile, especially when administered by a licensed acupuncturist. There are no side effects with the treatment.
- Acupuncture is a great alternative to medications and more invasive medical procedures.
- Medical doctors refer their patients to acupuncturists more than any other ‘alternative’ health provider.
- Over 51% of medical doctors believe acupuncture to be an effective and valuable form of treatment.
How Does Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine Work?
Chinese Medicine believes that a vital energy called “Qi” runs along pathways called meridians in the human body, similar to how there are nerve pathways in the body. When this energy or Qi is blocked and not flowing properly, illness or pain occurs. The needles help to stimulate the circulation of Qi, thus restoring health and alleviating pain.
Recent research has shown acupuncture to have many physiological effects on the body. When a needle is inserted, it communicates with the body to send signals to the brain causing the brain to secrete chemicals such as opioid peptides, endorphins, and enkephalins. These are known to induce relaxation and alter our perception of pain thereby decreasing the pain we experience. Acupuncture has also been shown to regulate hormones, have an anti-inflammatory effect, and improve circulation.
Other Treatment Modalities in Chinese Medicine that May Be Used
There are many different treatment modalities in Chinese Medicine with acupuncture being one of these modalities. These include cupping, moxibustion, gua sha, tuina massage, and herbal medicine.
All treatments modalities in Chinese Medicine aim to restore the body’s balance and bring it back to homeostasis.