Acupuncture is a form of alternative medicine that involves inserting extremely thin needles into specific points on the body. It was developed by the Chinese millennia ago and is most commonly used to treat pain.
How does it work?
The ancient Chinese believed in a lifeforce called chi or qi that flowed through the body along pathways called meridians. They believed that ill health was caused by blockages or imbalances affecting the meridians. They therefore used acupuncture to unblock the affected meridian and/or restore balance.
Western doctors believe that acupuncture works by stimulating the muscles, nerves or connective tissues. Some believe that this stimulation increases blood flow and boosts the body’s natural pain killers.
What is acupuncture used to treat?
Acupuncture is most commonly used to treat types of pain. Some studies have actually found that it is a more effective treatment for lower back pain than many conventional treatments. Acupuncture may also be used to treat the following conditions:
- Menstrual cramps
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Myofascial pain
What happens during treatment?
The practitioner will take the patient’s medical history and learn about their pain. They will look for specific points or places on the body. Each point relates to a specific physical problem or function.
After they find the points, the practitioner will insert very thin needles into the patient’s skin. They may insert the needles at different depths depending on what they believe is needed. Patients feel a slight pressure when the therapist inserts a needle. The treatment site may feel tingly, itchy, numb or a little sore.
The number of needles used during a treatment may vary. The practitioner may leave the needles in place for a short amount of time, or they may gently manipulate them.
Most patients need more than one treatment to get the desired results. The number of treatments needed will depend on the severity of the patient’s pain.
How do you find a reliable acupuncturist?
Many states require acupuncturists to have earned a certificate form the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, which is a non-profit organization that upholds standards for practitioners of acupuncture and traditional Asian medicine. Acupuncturists earn the certificate by passing an exam administered by the Commission, that maintains a website visitors can use to locate certified acupuncturists in their area.
Lakeside Sports Chiropractic Center and Motorsports Rehab proudly offers acupuncture to patients in the Cornelius, NC area. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.