Acupuncture

 

Acupuncture

 

 How was Acupuncture discovered?

Acupuncture is one of the world's oldest forms of medicine dating back 2,500 years. Today, it is one of the most commonly accepted forms of allied health care in the west and can be found in many hospitals in the United Kingdom.

Thousands of years ago, the Chinese discovered the complex relationship between stimulating a point on the skin to influence a particular organ or organ pathway.  The ancient Chinese had a very advanced scientific understanding of the body and how it works, but they defined it in terms and symbols not known to those in the western world. The acupuncture theory of the ancient Chinese takes into account their deep understanding of the lymphatic, circulatory, vascular, and nervous systems. They were able to influence all of these systems through their selection of acupuncture points on the 14 major pathways / acupuncture channels.

What is Acupuncture? 

Acupuncture is the insertion of fine needles, application of warmth, massage, cupping or gentle electrical stimulation to specific points on the body.  It has been practiced for so long in China due to its simplicity, wide range of use, excellent results and few side effects.

Acupuncture uses thin sterile disposable needles that are inserted into acupuncture points to cause an effect in the body. The practitioner treats not just the symptoms but the whole person - body, mind and spirit.

How does it work?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) views illness, disease or injury as disharmony, acupuncture works by addressing this imbalance, whilst restoring and maintaining good health. Acupuncture views the body as an organic whole, the benefits frequently include more than just relief from a particular condition. Many people find that it can also lead to increased energy levels, improved sleep, mood and appetite and an enhanced sense of overall well being.

What is fascinating about Chinese medicine is that illness is viewed as having the "manifestation" (e.g. the physical signs and symptoms you have) and the underlying cause which is considered the "root" of an illness, both are addressed and treated. Chinese medicine also views all aspects of the body, mind and spirit. It is important that all these aspects maintain equilibrium to promote optimum health.  The acupuncture, herbs or other techniques aim to restore this balance, ultimately between yin and yang, and in effect work to "reharmonise".

Is it safe?

Acupuncture has a very sound track record. The needles used are single-use, sterile and disposable. Response to treatment occasionally includes tiredness, or mild dizziness and rarely minor bruising may occur. However, all such reactions are short-lived.

What does it feel like?

When a needle is inserted, the sensation is often described as a tingling or dull ache. Needles may be inserted and immediately removed, or may be left in place for up to twenty minutes, depending on the effect required. During the treatment, patients commonly experience a wonderful feeling of relaxation.

What if I am scared of needles?

Acupuncture needles are very fine unlike those used in injections and blood tests. If the thought of even fine needles is just too much, there are other techniques used to stimulate acupuncture points, including acupressure, cupping and application of warmth (moxa).

What does Acupuncture treat?

Here are some conditions regularly treated in practice. Please feel free to contact us in order to arrange a FREE mini consultation during which we can discuss your symptoms and treatment needs.

  • Fatigue syndrome, tiredness, insomnia, low energy levels, ME etc.
  • Gastro-intestinal disorders - digestive problems, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), epigastric pain, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, constipation etc.
  • Gynaecological disorders - painful periods, heavy periods, premenstrual tension, fertility IVF and pregnancy support, menopausal symptoms etc.
  • Musculo-skeletal complaints - back pain, sciatica, neck and shoulder tension, headaches, osteoarthtritis, rheumatoid arthritis, repetitive strain injury (RSI) etc
  • Neurological conditions - Bells palsy, partial paralysis etc.
  • Oedema - localised swelling, urinary problems etc.
  • Psycho-emotional problems - depression, stress, anxiety, grief, anger management etc.
  • Respiratory disorders - wheezing, asthma, allergic rhinitis, sinusitis, cough, cold, hay fever etc.

About your consultation:

Initial consultations include a detailed case history, considering all aspects of health and offering a holistic treatment, therefore determining the best course of action for you. This usually lasts 45 minutes to 1 hour, treatment is usually offered in the initial session, depending on complexity of problems. Follow up sessions are 30 - 45 minutes.

 

You will be asked about your current symptoms, what treatment you have received, your medical history, your diet, digestive system, sleeping patterns and emotional state. The acupuncturist is also likely to feel your pulses on both wrists, and may ask to look at your tongue. The acupuncture points used are not always close to the part of the body where you experience the problem. For example, although you might suffer from headaches, needles may be inserted in your foot or hand.

 

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