An Overview of Acupuncture

It is often believed in the West that acupuncture is a system of inserting very fine needles into specific areas of the body to relieve pain. However, contrary to that belief, acupuncture is much more than that. It is a system that has been used in China for some 2,500 years – or possibly more – and is an overall treatment which is designed to correct imbalances of energy in the body. In fact, the Chinese believe that there is a consistent flow of energy in the body and that while the energy flows freely the body maintains a good state of health. However, if something blocks the flow of energy, which the Chinese call qi (pronounced chee) or the energy becomes in any way out of balance, some form of ill health results. Without going too deeply into the realms of quantum physics this could very well be the case, because quantum physics has shown that when everything is said and done we are all basically composed of energy. That goes for your body, the chair that you are sitting on, your car, your home, your dog, the lightning in a thunderstorm – everything is composed of energy.

The Chinese believe that by correcting the flow of energy health will be restored. However, there is no scientific consensus that this is the case, and in fact nobody really knows how it works. One piece of research in 2010 showed that acupuncture needles had an effect on adenosine which is an amino acid in the skin which becomes active after an injury in order to ease pain, which could tfg2y34u4u;lmnc;lmnc bnm,.0i ndeed partly explain why acupuncture relieves pain. In fact, acupuncture has been shown to be effective in a range of different disorders including osteoarthritis, migraines and headaches, sinusitis, asthma, vomiting and nausea, irritable bowel syndrome, depression and anxiety, infertility, premenstrual tension, dental pain, low back pain, and even post-traumatic stress disorder. And still there is no scientific explanation as to exactly how it works, but the plain fact is that in many instances it does. Possibly we should simply accept that as fact as the Chinese do, although, of course, they have their own theory. Much More Widely Accepted Certainly, acupuncture has become much more widely accepted in the West over the course of the last 40 years or so. If you are considering acupuncture you should first visit your doctor, partly because as the practice has become more widespread your doctor may know of a qualified practitioner in your area. He or she may be able to offer a recommendation depending on the problems that you have. If you are taking any sort of blood thinners you should also check with your doctor, as a common reaction is bleeding or bruising where the needle is inserted and this may cause minor pain or soreness.

When you first visit a qualified therapist at a London acupuncture clinic you may find that the practitioner asks a lot of questions about your overall health, diet, bowel habits, and more, all of which may appear to have nothing to do with the reason you are seeking assistance. However, traditional Chinese medicine encompasses a number of other modalities including Chinese herbs, massage, and more, which can all be used together in order to make a diagnosis and provide a combination of treatments in addition to acupuncture. When the acupuncture needles are inserted they are placed at very specific points according to the problems that you have. Some people feel a short stinging sensation, but many people don’t feel anything at all as the needles themselves are extremely fine – as thin as human hair. Some practitioners will manipulate the needles gently and others will even give them a very small electrical charge. The needles are left in for somewhere between five and twenty minutes before being removed. Some conditions will require three or four treatments while chronic conditions may require as many as a dozen spread over a period of eight to ten weeks. Very often the practitioner will also prescribe herbal medicines to assist in the recovery. In addition, there may be dietary changes recommended along with bodywork therapies such as massages depending on the condition.