Acupuncture is something that you should consider if you’ve been looking for ways to improve your overall health. It has been used for over 3,000 years to treat individuals who are in pain and are suffering from ailments. But how does it work? And what are the most important things that you need to know about it? We will discuss the answers to both questions in this post. This post will tackle:
- what acupuncture is
- how it can treat individuals
- and important things that you need to know about acupuncture
So, what is acupuncture?
Acupuncture originated in China. It is an ancient healing practice that involves the use of thin needles that are inserted into a patient’s body. It is one of the core elements in traditional Chinese medicine.
What can acupuncture help with?
Acupuncture can help you if you’re experiencing any of the following and you want to try alternative ways of healing:
- menstrual cramps
- irregular menstruation
- fertility issues
- neck pain
- chronic fatigue
But how does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture works by dealing with the ‘qi’ or energies in your body. In traditional Chinese medicine, practitioners go by the concept that each individual has ‘qi’ or energies in their bodies. An individual suffers from ailments or diseases if that ‘qi’ is blocked or not flowing freely. This is the very thing that acupuncture tends to do. Through the insertion of needles, acupuncturists trigger the different parts of the body that may store stagnant ‘qi’ or blocked energies. This is how acupuncture helps fight chronic fatigue. This is how it can help maintain a healthy body. In traditional Chinese medicine, a healthy person is one with free-flowing and unblocked energies within.
#1: You need to know about the evidence and studies that support its effectiveness.
Scientific studies and trials have shown that acupuncture is safe and effective in treating ailments if it is done by a skilled, certified, and competent practitioner.
In the study conducted by the British National Health Service, results showed that acupuncture can help in the management or treatment of jaw pain, dental pain, and discomfort after a chemotherapy treatment.
Its practitioners claim that it can also help in the treatment of other diseases but no multiple trials have yet to be executed. This is why there is no specific study yet that solidly establishes its effectiveness.
To date, people can rely on published clinical guidelines that state that acupuncture is moderately helpful to patients when it comes to treating a wide range of disorders.
#2: You need to know about the laws and regulations for acupuncture practice.
You should be aware of the pertinent acupuncture mandates by the Australian government:
- people who wish to practice acupuncture can also do such if they are registered and certified by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency
- strict hygiene regulations – acupuncture practitioners must comply with strict hygiene practices. They should always use pre-sterilized single-use acupuncture needles that are disposable
- not all herbs and herbal substances are allowed to be administered to patients as some can be toxic
- the needle that will be used on you should be acupuncture needles that are included on the approved list of the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods
#3: You need to know the risks involved in undergoing acupuncture.
You should know of the risks that can befall you if you would be undergoing an acupuncture session with an unskilled, unqualified, and unregistered practitioner:
- you can suffer from infections – this will be the case if an unskilled practitioner will use an unsterile needle. Such a needle can have bacteria that can result in local infection. Hepatitis, HIV, and other bloodborne diseases may also be contracted if an acupuncture needle is reused.
- you can suffer from allergic reactions – unskilled practitioners can use excessive amounts of herbs during treatment that can cause allergic reactions.
- you can suffer from a skin injury – an unskilled practitioner can be clumsy in inserting needles. Such incompetence can lead to the entry of a needle into a blood vessel. Such a case can lead to pain, bleeding, and bruising.
- you can suffer from unexpected side effects – an acupuncture session with an unskilled practitioner can result in experiencing depression, insomnia, and more pain.
#4: You need to know how to choose an acupuncturist.
To ensure that you don’t get to experience any of the risks mentioned, you should ensure that the acupuncturist that you will work with is skilled, competent, certified, and experienced. To do this, you need to check if your preferred acupuncturist or herbalist is registered with the government.
#5: You need to know how an acupuncture session is performed.
To fully determine if acupuncture is for you, you need to know how the session is performed. An acupuncture session will involve:
- the use of pre-sterilized disposable needles
- the need to sit or lie down, depending on the kind of treatment that will be done
- painless insertion when properly done
- feeling mild tingles around the site where the needle was inserted
- such tingles can also seem like heaviness or warmth
- some people don’t feel anything at all when needles are inserted
- your acupuncturist can also use cupping on you – a cup will be used to bring blood towards an acupuncture point
- Chinese herbs may be applied
- laser may be used to stimulate acupuncture points
- massage can also be deployed
- moxibustion or the burning of herbs can also take place during the session