- Alternative & Natural Medicine
Acupuncture: Regain Health and Balance
Acupuncture is based on the ancient Chinese belief that energy, referred to as Qi or Chi by the Chinese, flows through pathways known as channels or meridians in our bodies. These channels maintain health and balance and connect to every organ and tissue, carrying to them chi, water, blood, plasma and other important fluids. Symptoms of disease occur when the flow of energy is blocked by emotions, stress, injury or poor lifestyle choices. An acupuncturist can help you identify the location of the blockage and unblock it.
Acupuncture Releases Endorphins and Serotonin
During an acupuncture session, circulation increases, pain-killing endorphins are released, as well as the happy hormone serotonin which helps you get rid of depression or negativity. More than 40 acupuncture colleges have been established in the U.S. since the introduction of this traditional Chinese therapy to the West in 1973. Many insurance companies cover acupuncture treatment.
Acu-points are located on the skin and act as doorways to the channels. There are 36 main acu- points and more are being discovered even today. Acu-points are usually located in the dips of muscles and joints. When pressed they can be painful, indicating an energy imbalance. However, when the acupuncturist stimulates these points with needles, you will feel a sensation of warmth, relaxation or tingling.
When Not to Go in For Acupuncture
While acupuncture is a completely safe, risk-free therapy without any side effects (unlike drug therapy), avoid acupuncture in ulcers, open wounds or undiagnosed swellings. Don’t go in for a session if you are on recreational drugs, intoxicated, extremely tired or weak or are famished or have over-eaten.
What to Expect at an Acupuncture Session
Many people think that acupuncture hurts, but the truth is that it doesn’t. The needles used are hair-thin and these are inserted just below the skin. The acupuncturist will check your tongue, your pulse, posture and the colour and texture of your skin. All these signs help him diagnose the nature of your illness and choose the right treatment. In fact, an acupuncturist will even consider your personality – whether it is reserved and calm or vivacious.
You will be asked about food and drink preferences as well as your medical history. Telling the acupuncturist about your sleeping patterns will also help. You will go through a channel check in the area of discomfort. Soreness in an acu-point indicates illness or an imbalance that could lead to it.
Depending on your condition, the acupuncturist might ask you to avoid alcohol, sex, vigorous exercise or heavy meals of starches and meat for the next 12 to 24 hours. Make sure you carry a wrap along. The treatment opens up your pores and lowers body temperature, making you more vulnerable to the cold and wind.
Illnesses Acupuncture Helps Relieve
The long list of illnesses that can benefit by acupuncture include:
- Multiple sclerosis
- Trigeminal neuralgia
Acupuncture has also been successfully used in alleviating the pain and nausea resulting from cancer treatment.