Acupuncture is a holistic medical technique that uses extremely thin needles to relieve pain, stress and a whole range of other health complaints in patients. Holistic medicine is an all-round healing approach that looks at the body as a whole and not as separate parts in isolation. By seeing the body as a whole instead of a group of parts you can often achieve better results with less harmful side effects. So, what is Acupuncture and how does it work?
Acupuncture takes a holistic view of human health and wellbeing. It recognizes that the human body contains flows of energy, called ‘Qi’ in Chinese (pronounced as ‘Chi’ in English) which play an important role in the overall health of the body.
These energy flows can become blocked or limited which can lead to a deterioration in the health of the patient. An acupuncture practitioner uses very fine needles to unblock these channels of energy, known as ‘Meridians’, to release the flow of energy and bring health to their patient.
From a modern scientific perspective, it has been shown to stimulate nerves, connective tissues and muscles while improving blood flow around the body. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) has conducted research (1) and shown that it can help with:
- Back Aches and Pains
- Neck Pains
- Knee injuries and pain
The History of Acupuncture reaches back into our distant past
Acupuncture is a medical technique that was originally developed in ancient China and is one of the oldest forms of healing practice on Earth. The earliest known records of a documented system of acupuncture dates back to 100 BCE in China although there are theories that place the origins of acupuncture to around 6000 years ago, when sharpened bones were used instead of needles which were only adopted later. The sharpened bones that were used were also used as surgical implements in ancient China. (2)
Since acupuncture was invented in China it has spread all over the world and today it is practiced as part of holistic medicine to help millions of patients deal with a wide range of conditions.
The Benefits of Acupuncture
Acupuncture can have fantastic effects on your overall health, but it can also be used to target specific complaints that will improve your productivity at work as well as improve your home life.
Acupuncture has been shown in studies to reduce the levels of cortisol which is a major stress hormone. This leads to better mental acuity and a better outlook during your day to day life.
Boosts the Immune System
High levels of cortisol in the human body play a significant role in weakening the immune system which can leave you more open to viral and bacterial infections. Regular sessions help to keep cortisol levels down which will help your immune system to stay healthy making you more resilient to disease and poor health.
Eases Aches and Pains
Acupuncture has been used for thousands of years to ease aches and pains, including those brought on by old age. Research has shown that acupuncture can help with neck, back and knee aches and pains. It can also be used to bring down bruises and swellings. This drug free method is a great approach to dealing with what can otherwise be a chronic condition.
Headaches and Migraines
Headaches are one of the most common health complaints and millions of people use acupuncture to address this problem. A session can relieve you of your migraine or headache for days to come leaving you feeling relaxed and more optimistic!
Improved Energy Levels
Many patients who have tried this have reported that they are sleeping better and have improved energy levels throughout the day. Acupuncture opens up the inner energy flows within your body which allows your natural mechanisms to function at their best.
Does it Hurt to get Acupuncture?
Many people are daunted at the thought of getting their first treatment but there’s really nothing to fear! While you are getting your acupuncture treatment you may feel slight tingling sensations or numbness, but you should not feel any pain either during or after the session. Remember that the needles are much thinner even than a vaccine is so you will hardly feel a thing! In fact, many patients find the experience extremely pleasant.
No treatment is the same as another with each session being tailored for you personally. Practitioners of acupuncture are highly trained and undergo rigorous tests and education before becoming qualified to treat patients.
Is Acupuncture Good for You?
Acupuncture has seen a renaissance of popularity recently including in the West where it is frequently practiced as part of a more holistic approach to health care. Although some people might claim that because it is an ancient practice it is outdated but the truth is that the art of acupuncture has been perfected over thousands of years and is by now a highly refined medical practice.
Millions of people receive this treatment around the world every year and report fantastic results for their mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. In America alone, more than 10 million people receive acupuncture treatments every year!
Acupuncture is a great option for many health complaints and should be used in conjunction with a good diet, plenty of exercise and alongside any other medicines that you are prescribed by your doctor. Acupuncture should not be used in isolation or as a replacement to other therapies that you have been prescribed; and consequently, you should always consult your personal doctor before you decide to come off any medication.
Holistic medicine is a wise approach to dealing with any health concerns and incorporating acupuncture into your health regime is a popular alternative to prescription drugs and chemical treatments. For many people one treatment is sufficient to bring them the help and relief they need, while about half of those who visited an acupuncturist in America visited up to 5 times a year. (3)
Life Changing Results
Acupuncture can make an amazing difference to your health and wellbeing and although it may be daunting to try it out for the first time the results can be genuinely life changing. The ancient art of acupuncture has a great deal to offer us in the modern world and as the practice spreads more and more people are experiencing the massive benefits that it has to offer.
- URL : https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/acupuncture-in-depth
- Acupuncture History, URL : https://www.news-medical.net/health/Acupuncture-History.aspx
- US National Library of Health. URL : https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3296189/#:~:text=The%20ever%20acupuncture%20users%20increased,visited%20more%20than%2010%20times.
- Image by Alterio Felines from Pixabay