How does acupuncture work?
Many studies in animals and humans have demonstrated that acupuncture can cause multiple biological responses. These responses can occur close to the site of application, or at a distance, mediated mainly by sensory neurons to many structures within the central nervous system. This can lead to activation of pathways affecting various physiological systems in the brain as well as in the periphery.
Considerable evidence supports the claim that opioid peptides are released during acupuncture. Stimulation by acupuncture may also activate thehypothalamus and the pituitary gland, resulting in a broad spectrum of systemic effects. Additionally, the release of endogenous opioids and changes in blood pressure have been observed after painful stimuli, vigorous exercise, and/or relaxation training; and acupuncture can share similar biological mechanisms.
Acupuncture is a time-honored medicine
The origins of acupuncture in China can be traced back at least 2000 years, making it one of the oldest and most long-standing health care systems in the world. Today, acupuncture is an effective, natural and increasingly popular form of health care that is being used by people from a wide range of cultural and social backgrounds.
Acupuncture takes a holistic approach to understanding normal function and disease processes and focuses as much on the prevention of illness as on the treatment.
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture treatment involves the insertion of fine, sterile needles into acupuncture points along the body's meridians to clear energy blockages and encourage the normal flow of qi through the individual. The practitioner may also stimulate the acupuncture points using other methods, including moxibustion, cupping, laser therapy, electro-stimulation and massage.
As a natural form of healing, acupuncture has the following benefits:
- provides drug-free pain relief
- effectively treats a wide range of acute and chronic ailments
- treats the underlying cause of disease and illness as well as the symptoms
- provides an holistic approach to the treatment of disease and illness
- assists in the prevention against disease and illness as well as the maintenance of general well-being
Acupuncture is known to treat a wide range of disorders including:
Neurological conditions such as headaches, migraines, difficulty sleeping, nervous tension, stroke, some forms of deafness, facial and inter-costal neuralgia, trigeminal neuralgia, some forms of paralysis, sequelae of poliomyelitis, peripheral neuropathy,noises in the ears, and dizziness.
Cardiovascular disorders such as high or low blood pressure, fluid retention, chest pain, angina pectoris, poor circulation, cold hands and feet, and muscle cramps.
Respiratory conditions such as bronchial asthma, acute and chronic bronchitis, acute tonsillitis, rhinitis, sinusitis, hay fever, chronic cough, laryngitis, sore throat, influenza and the common cold.
Digestive system disorders such as toothache, post-extraction pain, gingivitis, mouth ulcers, heartburn, colitis, diarrhea, constipation, and weight control.
Skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, nerve rash, herpes zoster, acne, scar tissue and resultant adhesions, hair loss and dandruff.
Eye conditions such as visual disorders, red, sore, itchy or watery eyes, conjunctivitis, simple cataracts.
Sporting injuries such as sprained ankles and knees, cartilage problems, corking and tearing of muscles, torn ligaments and bruises.
Psychological conditions such as depression, phobias, emotional disturbances, anxiety, nervousness and addictions such as smoking.