A Comprehensive Guide On How Acupuncture Works

Acupuncture is a holistic healing approach based on the 2500-year-old Chinese practice. It involves inserting needles in your body that triggers specific points, and it helps to cure various ailments. The pressure of needles, their depth, selection of points, etc., is based on specific treatments of health issues.

Many people have used acupuncture to get cured of various issues such as anxiety, depression, allergies, etc. These people go to the extent of swearing on the effectiveness of this traditional healing method.

Doesn’t that make you curious to know more about this miracle-treatment methodology? If you answered yes, then you have landed on the right article. We have gathered comprehensive information on acupuncture to help you gain a detailed insight on all there is to know about this traditional Chinese treatment.

So, What Is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a treatment approach based on Chinese medicine. This process is used in treating various forms of ailments by triggering targeted points of the skin with the help of needles.

If you are wondering about the invasiveness of this procedure, then put your mind at ease. As per research, the risks associated with acupuncture are negligible. Acupuncture is basically a minimally invasive method, and it is aimed at merely stimulating the areas of the skin that are nerve-rich.

However, the clarification on how acupuncture works scientifically is still pretty vague. Some claim that acupuncture is all about balancing vital energy, while others believe it has something to do with the neurological effect. Scientists and doctors are still skeptical about the effectiveness of acupuncture.

How Should Acupuncture Be Done?

It is important to note that acupuncture, although safe, must only be performed by experts. For instance, Morningside Acupuncture specializes in dry needling, trigger points, electroacupuncture, and Chinese herbal medicine. Various factors have a direct impact on the effectiveness of acupuncture, such as:

  • It must be performed correctly
  • Licensed practitioners must perform acupuncture
  • Treatment must be done for specific ailments
  • If needed, combined treatment with Chinese herbs is more effective

Understanding How Acupuncture Works

As per the conventional Chinese medication, “yin” and “yang” are the life forces that are responsible for a healthy life. The life force that flows through our body is referred to as “qi” or “chi.” A balance between “yin” and “yang” results in a harmonious balance responsible for your health. One gets sick when there is an imbalance between them.

There are 350 acupuncture points in the body that are focused on the meridians through which “Qi” or the lifeforce flows through the body. The purpose of inserting needles in the body is to bring the energy flow into proper balance.

It is important to know that these claims are not backed by scientific evidence.

The Process Of Acupuncture

When you opt for acupuncture for a specific ailment, you will need to set up an appointment for the treatment. The acupuncturist starts by examining the patient. You might be advised for single sitting treatment or treatment over several weeks, depending on the assessment of your condition.

Usually, people with a chronic condition are required one or two weekly treatments for a few months. One can expect to start seeing results from about eight to twelve sessions of acupuncture.

After assessing the condition, the treatment begins using sterile disposable needles.

The acupuncturist would advise combined treatment with Chinese herbs or self-care if needed.

You will be asked to lie down on the front, back, or side. It would depend on the points where the needles would insert. You might feel a slight sting or tingling while needles are inserted into your skin. Some even feel a slight ache at this time, but it subsides quickly. The entire process is relatively painless.

Sometimes treatment with heated or electrically stimulated needles is required. Your treating acupuncturist would advise on it before starting.

The needles are inserted and kept for anywhere between five to thirty minutes.

What Happens During The Procedure?

When the acupuncturist is done examining your condition, appropriate points are determined for the planned treatment. You will be advised about the site of treatment and whether or not you need to remove any clothing. If needed, you would be asked to wear a towel or a gown to change, and then you would need to lie down on a padded table.

The procedure is divided into three steps:

  1. Needle Insertion – The acupuncturist determines the treatment area and inserts the needles at specific points at various depths. Since the needles are very thin, you might not feel anything. Some feel slight discomfort or pain when the needles reach the right depth. For a typical treatment, about five to twenty needles are inserted.
  2. Tweaking the Needles – The practitioner may sometimes move or twist the needles gently after insertion. Some even apply heat and electrical pulses to the needles. Such practice is common in alleviating pain.
  3. Removing the Needles – After about 10 to 20 minutes, the acupuncturist would remove the needles. There is no discomfort to the patient when needles are removed.

Experience After The Acupuncture

Some people have claimed to have calming or relaxing feeling while others feel energized after the acupuncture.

Benefits Of Acupuncture

Several types of research have been conducted on a controlled group to check acupuncture’s effectiveness. One study elucidates that acupuncture appears to be effective for postoperative dental pain, postoperative nausea and vomiting, and chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting. However, more studies are required to check the effectiveness of acupuncture in the treatment of:

  • Period pains
  • Dysentry
  • Tennis elbow
  • Peptic ulcer
  • osteoarthritis of the knee
  • Asthma
  • Chronic Pain
  • Drug Addiction
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Neuralgia
  • Induced labor
  • Cold and cough
  • Dementia
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Hemorrhagic fever

Concluding Thoughts

Acupuncture is pseudoscience, but it has gained wide popularity as an alternative therapy in numerous ailments. It is an old-age traditional form of treatment, and its heritage can be linked to the Chinese culture. Understanding how the acupuncture process works helps to get better insight into the purpose and direction of treatment.

Hopefully, the information on this blog helps you understand how acupuncture works and how it can help you treat various health issues.

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