Acupuncture: How it Works and the Benefits
Acupuncture can seem a bit intimidating, especially if you aren’t fond of needles. Most people fear that acupuncture will hurt or be uncomfortable, but that really isn’t the case.
Acupuncture is a holistic procedure that originated in China. It involves the stimulation of acupuncture points by puncturing the skin with small, thin needles. When performed by a trained professional, acupuncture causes virtually no pain. So now that we have a better understanding of the basics, let’s delve into the details a bit more.
How Does it Work?
The practice of acupuncture can be dated back more than 2,000 years, and is believed to have many healing properties. It stems from the belief that there are patterns of energy flow throughout the body, and that the disruptions of this flow lead to many problems. Basically, disruptions of the flow of energy can cause disease, pain, and much more.
Acupuncture is a technique designed to stimulate specific points on the body in order to relieve pain and unblock the flow of energy. Typically a practitioner will insert very small needles at specific points, and these points can vary depending on the issue.
What Conditions Can It Treat?
Acupuncture can help with a variety of issues, both physically and mentally. It can help balance out the body and may also increase your energy levels. Here are just a few conditions that acupuncture can treat:
- Chronic Pain: This is a big one, and is one of the many reasons people seek out acupuncture. Chronic pain in your muscles and joints can make like miserable. Whether it be constant pain in your back, neck, shoulders, etc., acupuncture has been known to help ease the pain.
- Menstrual Pain: There are certain acupuncture points that help regulate the flow of blood through the abdominal cavity. These points also help relax the nervous system, which can help calm the muscular contractions that occur on your menstrual cycle.
- Stress and Anxiety: Acupuncture helps regulate hormones, and helps to lower stress hormones. Acupuncture has also helped those with anxiety and panic attacks, as it helps balance the body.
- Headache: Acupuncture can help both headache relief and headache prevention. Specifically, migraines and chronic headaches.
- Hormone Imbalance: Acupuncture has a regulating effect on the body and can help to promote normal functioning of various systems, from hormone levels to sleep cycle, energy levels, moods, and digestion.
- Infertility: Some fertility doctors recommend acupuncture for their patients to help lower overall stress levels, because stress hormones can lower fertility hormones like progesterone.
These are just a few common conditions treated by acupuncture, but they are far from the only conditions. Acupuncture may also help nausea, osteoarthritis, and low back pain. The list of benefits can go on and on.
Does Acupuncture Hurt?
When most people think of acupuncture, they think of needles. While acupuncturists do use a type of needle, they are in no way similar to medical hypodermic needles. Hypodermic needles have hallow points and sharp edges that break the skin. Acupuncture needles are round-point thin and solid needles, that are sterilized and disposable. The wire-like size of these needles is comparable to a strand of hair.
The depth the needle goes into your skin is very shallow, not nearly enough to draw blood. So the needles may not be big, but do they hurt? When it comes to acupuncture, there really shouldn’t be any elicited pain. The most you should feel is a tingling or pulsating sensation, or a dull ache that passes quickly. If you do feel slight discomfort, the acupuncturist can remove the needle and reposition it. Acupuncture relieves pain, so pain shouldn’t be your main concern.
The Takeaway: Acupuncture: How it Works and the Benefits
While acupuncture may seem a bit intimidating at first, it comes with so many benefits. Acupuncture is a complementary treatment that can help treat many conditions. The list above is only a small portion of the conditions acupuncture can treat. If you are struggling with any of those issues and are seeking an alternative treatment, why not look into acupuncture?
Click on this link to schedule an Appointment at SHIN Wellness today!