What is Acupuncture? How Does Acupuncture Work?
Acupuncture is a traditional practice in Chinese medicine that is based upon the belief that disease is caused by disrupting the essential life energy flows (qi) through your body. This imbalance can be repaired by applying pressure to specific points of your body which will restore the free flow of energy and usually involves the insertion of thin solid needles to improve health.
This technique is widely used to treat many physical and emotional conditions ranging from headaches, muscular pain, anxiety, sciatica, morning sickness and depression to infertility. It is often used to alleviate the side-effects of other treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation; is a safe and effective intervention, and should not be confused with dry needling.
What Does Acupuncture Involve?
A typical session involves the insertion of very fine stainless steel needles at specific points in the body to realign your energy flows. These needles are only used once and are not reused. Results can occur very quickly although it often takes several sessions for your energies to become permanently realigned and free-flowing.
At the Bing’s Natural Health clinic we use this modality extensively in treatments because of its powerful healing properties. We also offer laser acupuncture for children and for our patients who are nervous or unsure about using needles.
Electroacupuncture is available in the clinic. Electroacupuncture uses continuous electric pulses (with or without needles) and is suitable to treat a wide range of conditions, including chronic pain. Patients may feel a slight tingling sensation during the treatment.
Naturally all of our equipment and needles are properly handled in compliance with the strictest standards of hygiene and safety. The acupuncture needles are not reused and are disposed of after a single use.
What Conditions Does Acupuncture Treat Effectively?
It can be used to treat many conditions, including (but not limited to):-
Both male and female infertility can often be caused by hormonal and energy imbalances which fertility acupuncture treats effectively. Many patients prefer to try a more natural and less invasive first step in resolving their infertility, before resorting to IVF, in which case IVF acupuncture is helpful.
Acupuncture can accelerate the healing process from many structural injuries like sprains, strains, and even broken bones. In addition to the immediate site of the injury there are referred effects which can be treated very effectively.
Allergies, Colds & Flu:
Because acupuncture focuses on restoring balance it is very effective at relieving allergies and boosting your immune system. Allergies, colds, and flu symptoms are early warning signs that your body’s energy is blocked and this treatment opens these pathways so that you feel better and don’t rely on medicines to help you function.
Weight gain, sugar cravings, and other obsessive behaviours:
If you struggle to overcome behaviours that you know are unhealthy, then acupuncture can help change your behaviour by dealing with the underlying cause. Don’t feel guilty about your unhealthy habit and lack of willpower – treat the underlying cause and it will go away.
Acupuncture for pain relief:
Pain is your body’s warning system. Our busy modern life teaches us to treat pain by masking the symptoms, not by discovering the cause. Acupuncture is used to treat the deeper causes of problems such as frozen shoulder, headaches and migraines, digestive problems, bloating and many other sources of pain.
Acupuncture care during pregnancy is safe, non-invasive and effective support, and can be a natural alternative to drugs. Pregnancy acupuncture can be used to treat many unwanted conditions during pregnancy including stress, mild depression, morning sickness, musculoskeletal pain, body pains, constipation and many more symptoms. Acupuncture for pregnancy and pregnancy massage can also help to prepare and strengthen both mother and baby for labour and birth.
Alleviating the Side Effects of Medication:
From antibiotics to hormone replacement therapy and cancer treatments, the medicines which restore our health can also have unpleasant side-effects. Acupuncture is very effective in helping your body regain its balance and could reduce over reliance on drugs.
Because so many physical and mental problems are caused by disrupting your energy flows, acupuncture is used in most treatments, often in combination with other modalities such as moxibustion, cupping, massage and Gua Sha.
Susan had never had acupuncture before. She came in for chronic bloating which was bothering her. Her doctor had said it was nothing and had been unable to help. Here’s what she said, “I was a bit nervous. What would the needles feel like? How would the session go? The practitioner asked me questions about many areas of my life and health and she was easy to talk to. When I finally lay down, to my surprise I hardly felt the needles. What I noticed most about the session was the sense of relaxation and well-being I felt. On my second visit I was suffering from a cough and congestion and so we focused on that: to my surprise while the rest of the family suffered from the bug I started to recover immediately. I look forward to my monthly treatments and believe that they have helped my health and energy.”
Acupuncture improves conventional treatments for chronic pain and depression.
Health specialists at the University of York have found that acupuncture can boost the effectiveness of conventional medical care and lessen the severity of depression and chronic pain, including chronic headaches, migraine attacks, osteoarthritis, shoulder pain, back and neck pain, according to a 2016 report published by the National Institute for Health Research(NIHR) Journals Library(https://www.york.ac.uk/). Professor MacPherson said that this provides a significant step forward in managing depression and treating chronic pain in a cost effective way.