Acupuncture is one of the oldest, most commonly used medical procedures in the world. Originating in China over 2,000 years ago, it has quickly gained popularity for its effectiveness in the relief / prevention of pain and various other health conditions. Practitioners use a new set of sterile hair-thin metallic needles with each client. The filaments are placed in specific points proven to be effective for any particular issue. Acupuncture treatments usually last from 30 minutes to one hour.
People experience acupuncture differently, but most people feel no or minimal pain. Some people feel energized after treatment, while others feel relaxed. Few complications from the use of acupuncture have ever been reported to the FDA.
Acupuncture is based on the concept that disease results from the disruption of the flow of energy throughout the body, therefore creating imbalance. It is proposed that acupuncture produces its effects by regulating the nervous system, aiding in the activity of pain-killing endorphins and immune system cells. Studies have also shown that acupuncture positively alters brain activity and thus, stimulates immune reactions and the regulation of blood pressure, blood flow, and body temperature.
Recent studies published in the Journal of the American Medical Association indicate that acupuncture is cost effective because of the high rate of success in a small number of treatments, decreased need for expensive medications and decreased time away from work. Some estimates indicate approximately 1/3 the cost of standard treatment
Acupuncture is useful as an acceptable alternative to or may be included in a comprehensive health management program. Recent studies show that acupuncture provides pain relief, improves function for people with conditions like arthritis, and serves as an effective complement to care. There are many afflictions for which acupuncture has been shown to help:
- Pain Syndromes
- Migraine Headaches
- Lower Back Pain
- High Blood Pressure
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Fertility Issues
- Pre and Postoperative Care
Further research is likely to uncover additional areas where acupuncture interventions will be useful.