A Guide to Acupuncture

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A Guide to Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an ancient practice of Chinese origin. It is far too a contentious and complex topic for this short article to be anything near a complete guide. Let us rather call this a quick overview of the fascinating practise of acupuncture.

Where and When did Acupuncture Originate?

The first written reference to acupuncture was in the ancient “Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine” published in 100 BC. Some scholars believe that the practice is even more ancient than that.

What is the Theory Behind Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a practice that involves both a spiritual and intuitive concept of self, as well as a physical intrusion, via very fine needles, to achieve a certain result. Ancient Chinese scholars believed that the human body possessed energy called chi which flowed along channels called meridians. When the energy is blocked or unbalanced, acupuncture is used to stimulate certain points in the body, which will help to unblock and re-balance your chi.

Although this might sound quite esoteric, there has been scientific evidence that acupuncture works in a variety of contexts, particularly pain relief, And there are accounts that it ca also be used for such purposes as overcoming addictions. Just why it works, remains something of a mystery.

So, What Exactly does an Acupuncturist Do?

acupuncture benefits

Acupuncture is used principally to relieve pain, although there are many other reported uses. After an initial examination, where you will be asked a number of questions, the acupuncturist will try and locate the points along your meridians that are responsible for your ailment. Specific points are associated with specific conditions.

Having located the point required, the practitioner will insert a very thin needle into your body. The depth of the insertion will depend on the result required and the acupuncturist’s diagnosis. The needles are then left in place for anything from 15 mins to an hour. Normally, acupuncture treatment is spread over a series of consultations. Traditionally, the treatment would be accompanied by the dispensing of herbal medicine and dietary advice.

Modern Practise

It is difficult to believe that the countless people that undergo acupuncture in places like the US and Europe are steeped in Chinese lore and the concepts of ying/yang, chi, and meridians considered necessary to get the full effect of acupuncture. However, the UK’s National Health Service and the World Health Organisation acknowledge that acupuncture does indeed have, at the very least, a palliative effect on many conditions.

It is now believed that the stimulation of the insertion of the needles causes the release of the body’s own painkillers, endorphins. This is a possible cause of the perceived benefits of acupuncture.

What are some of the Conditions treated with Acupuncture?

  • Chronic Headaches
  • Alleviate symptoms of stroke. Acupuncture has been shown to help in regaining lost facilities after a stroke.
  • Menstrual Pain
  • Nausea after chemotherapy
  • Chronic Pain. This chronic pain could include neck pain, lower back pain, joint pain and dental pain.
  • Carpel Tunnel Syndrome. This is a tingling and loss of sensation in the fingers and wrist.

This is by no means the end of the list of possible applications of acupuncture. We suggest that you do further research or contact an acupuncturist for advice if you are interested.

We are sure that this brief overview of a fascinating subject has stimulated your interest, and has been able to answer some of your questions. There are millions of people world-wide that swear by the effects of acupuncture.

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