Acupuncture

Acupuncture is among the oldest healing practices in the world. In the United States, where practitioners incorporate healing traditions from China, Japan, Korea, and other countries, acupuncture is considered part of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).

Acupuncture improves the body’s functions and promotes the natural self-healing process by stimulating specific anatomic sites–commonly referred to as acupuncture points, or acupoints. The most common method used to stimulate acupoints is the insertion of fine, sterile needles into the skin. Pressure, heat, or electrical stimulation may further enhance the effects. Other acupoint stimulation techniques include: manual massage, moxibustion or heat therapy, cupping, and the application of topical herbal medicines and linaments.

Traditional Chinese Medicine is based on an ancient philosophy that describes the universe, and the body, in terms of two opposing forces: yin and yang. When these forces are in balance, the body is healthy. Energy, called “qi” (pronounced “chee”) flows along specific pathways, called meridians, throughout the body. This constant flow of energy keeps the yin and yang forces balanced. However, if the flow of energy gets blocked, like water getting stuck behind a dam, the disruption can lead to pain, lack of function, or illness. Acupuncture therapy can release blocked qi in the body and stimulate function, evoking the body’s natural healing response through various physiological systems. Modern research has demonstrated acupuncture’s effects on the nervous system, endocrine and immune systems, cardiovascular system, and digestive system. By stimulating the body’s various systems, acupuncture can help to resolve pain, and improve sleep, digestive function, and sense of well-being.

Hundreds of clinical studies on the benefits of acupuncture show that it successfully treats conditions ranging from musculoskeletal problems (back pain, neck pain, and others) to nausea, migraine headache, anxiety, depression, insomnia, and infertility.

Case-controlled clinical studies have shown that acupuncture has been an effective treatment for the following diseases, symptoms or conditions:

Allergic rhinitis (including hay fever) Malposition of fetus, correction
Biliary colic Morning sickness
Depression (including depressive neurosis and depression following stroke) Nausea and vomiting
Dysentery, acute bacillary Neck pain
Dysmenorrhoea, primary Pain in dentistry (including dental pain and temporomandibular dysfunction)
Epigastralgia, acute (in peptic ulcer, acute and chronic gastritis, and gastrospasm) Periarthritis of shoulder
Facial pain (including craniomandibular disorders) Postoperative pain
Headache Renal colic
Hypertension, essential Rheumatoid arthritis
Hypotension, primary Sciatica
Induction of labor Sprain
Knee pain Stroke
Leukopenia Tennis elbow
Low back pain

 

The following diseases, symptoms or conditions have limited but probable evidence to support the therapeutic use of acupuncture:

Abdominal pain (in acute gastroenteritis or due to gastrointestinal spasm) Obesity
Acne vulgaris Opium, cocaine and heroin dependence
Alcohol dependence and detoxification Osteoarthritis
Bell’s palsy Pain due to endoscopic examination
Bronchial asthma Pain in thromboangiitis obliterans
Cancer pain Polycystic ovary syndrome (Stein-Leventhal syndrome)
Cardiac neurosis Post-extubation in children
Cholecystitis, chronic, with acute exacerbation Postoperative convalescence
Cholelithiasis Premenstrual syndrome
Competition stress syndrome Prostatitis, chronic
Craniocerebral injury, closed Pruritis
Diabetes mellitus, non-insulin-dependent Radicular and pseudoradicular pain syndrome
Earache Raynaud syndrome, primary
Epidemic haemorrhagic fever Recurrent lower urinary-tract infection
Epistaxis, simple (without generalized or local disease) Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
Eye pain due to subconjunctival injection Retention of urine, traumatic
Female infertility Schizophrenia
Facial spasm Sialism, drug-induced (excessive salivation)
Female urethral syndrome Sjögren syndrome
Fibromyalgia and fasciitis Sore throat (including tonsillitis)
Gastrokinetic disturbance Spine pain, acute
Gouty arthritis Stiff neck
Hepatitis B virus carrier status Temporomandibular joint dysfunction
Herpes zoster (human (alpha) herpesvirus 3) Tietze syndrome
Hyperlipaemia Tobacco dependence
Hypo-ovarianism Tourette syndrome
Insomnia Ulcerative colitis, chronic
Labour pain Urolithiasis
Lactation, deficiency Vascular dementia
Male sexual dysfunction, non-organic Whooping cough (pertussis)
Meniere disease
Neuralgia, post-herpetic
Neurodermatitis

 

Please contact our office to learn more about how acupuncture can help support your health.

Sources:

HTTP://CIM.UCSD.EDU/CLINICAL-CARE/ACUPUNCTURE.SHTML

HTTP://NCCAM.NIH.GOV/HEALTH/ACUPUNCTURE/INTRODUCTION.HTM