Acupuncture is the gentle insertion of very fine needles into specific points on the body. This process stimulates movement of energy within the body, allowing natural healing to take place. These points are selected based on over 3,000 years of experience in China and training acupuncturists.
Acupuncture is part of the holistic system of healing known as Traditional Chinese Medicine and the oldest (originated in China over 3000 years ago) and most comprehensive – and arguably the safest and most effective – system of human health care continuously practiced in the world. It is used by one third of the world’s population as a primary health care system. It is likely that more people have been treated by Chinese medicine throughout history than by any other formalized system of medicine. Because of its relatively low cost and its noninvasive nature, acupuncture has become a highly popular form of complementary health care in the United States. The World Health Organization (WHO) has endorsed acupuncture treatment for over 40 conditions, including pain, stress, digestive disorders, depression, allergies, sleeping disorders, addictions, headaches and menstrual disorders.
How Does the Acupuncture Work?
This highly effective system of medical care is based on natural laws which govern the movement of vital life giving energy, both in nature and in the body. This energy, called “Qi”, moves through the body in precise channels supporting functions of the body, mind and spirit. When “Qi” is moving disharmoniously, imbalance begins to surface in the form of specific symptoms. To address the underlying cause of a condition, these symptoms are viewed in relationship to the totality of a person. The gentle insertion of hair thin needles at specific points along the channels of Qi energy, help restore harmony. In the presence of this subtle yet profound intervention, symptoms often resolve and patients frequently experience renewed vitality.
What Are the Benefits of Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is often effective with a wide range of complains, including chronic fatigue, depression, back pain, joint pain, infertility, asthma, addictions, stress, and others. Acupuncture is also helpful for many chronic illnesses and health concerns that have no clear origin or cause.
Acupuncture helps to prevent illness by improving the overall functioning of the body’s immune system and organs. It is why Acupuncture is helpful for:
- Treating existing illnesses and injuries;
- Preventing both recurrence of illnesses and new illness;
- Improving overall health.
You don’t need to be ill to benefit from acupuncture and other methods of Oriental medicine. Many patients come to regular treatments to achieve increased effectiveness and enjoyment in your life. Acupuncture can be a powerful preventative measure to keep you healthy through the year.
A survey of people who receive acupuncture, conducted by Claire Cassidy, Ph.D., indicated that they see their physicians less frequently and use fewer medications. In addition, over two thirds of those surveyed reported having avoided recommended surgery.
What methods are used together with Acupuncture?
There are few related procedures that fall into the range of acupuncture treatments. The first is Electro-acupuncture. This is the using of very small electrical impulses of different frequency through the acupuncture needles. The method was primarily used for analgesia (pain relief or prevention), now used for wide range of diseases like post-stroke paralysis, stomach ulcer, injury recovery, and for facial rejuvenation to relax existing wrinkles and muscle toning.
Very commonly used method is Auriculotherapy or Ear acupuncture.
The theory is that since the ear has a rich nerve and blood supply, it would have connection all over the body. For this reason, the ear has many acupuncture points which correspond to many parts and organs of the body. Ear acupuncture has been successful in treating problems ranging from obesity to alcoholism and drug addiction, smoking cessation, depression. There are numerous studies either completed, or currently going on which affirms Auricular acupuncture effectiveness.
Another popular method is Moxibustion, which is the treatment of diseases by applying heat to acupuncture points. Acupuncture and moxibustion are considered complimentary forms of treatment, and are commonly used together. Moxibustion is used for
pathological conditions like bronchial asthma, bronchitis, some types of paralysis, post-herpetic neuralgia, arthritic disorders, common cold and flu.
Cupping is another type of treatment. This is the method of stimulating acupuncture points by applying suction through a metal, wood or glass jar, in which a partial vacuum has been created. This method produces blood congestion at the site, and therefore stimulates it. There are several different techniques for cupping therapy which are used for backache, sprains, soft tissue injures, chronic bronchitis and pneumonia.
Gua Sha (pronounced “gwa shaw” and translates to raising sand) is the ancient Asian technique of scraping the skin with a rounded edged tool to raise stagnation to the surface and release the exterior. Gua sha was historically practiced within families as a technique of self care. Typically this method used in the treatment of acute infections (cold), upper respiratory and digestive problems, Gua Sha provides relief from pain, stiffness, fever, chills, cough and nausea. It is also wonderful for frozen shoulder, insomnia, menstrual problems. Gua Sha is usually not repeated until the marks of the previous treatment have fully vanished.
Note*: the petechiae (blood spots) and bruising that arise from this treatment will last for four to five days.
One of the most popular alternatives to Acupuncture is Acupressure. This is simply acupuncture without needles. Stimulation of the acupuncture points is performed with the fingers or an instrument with a hard ball shaped head. This method is commonly used for infants and small children and for people who are afraid of needles.
Chinese Oriental medicine has been around for thousands of years, and has provided us with a unique and holistic approach to help prevent and treat disease. Western science and Traditional Chinese Medicine ultimately rely on the body’s natural healing ability to maintain health and protect against disease. Both have the same goal of helping a person stay healthy. Western science tends to use drugs and surgery as needed. Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners tend to use gentle needling and herbs. A combination of both systems creates an ideal environment of health and healing.
To learn more about acupuncture you may visit the following websites:
If you would like to come for a treatment contact me at the telephone number displayed below. We will discuss your concerns and schedule a free 20-minute consultation or your initial visit. Full information for new patient you can find on my website. During your first visit we will create treatment plan and schedule that will best meet your needs.