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What Is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a collection of procedures involving penetration of the skin with needles to stimulate certain points on the body. In its classical form it is a characteristic component of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). It has been categorized as a complementary health approach.

The word “acupuncture” is derived from the Latin words “acus” (needle) and “punctura” (penetration). Acupuncture originated in China approximately 2,000 years ago and is one of the oldest medical procedures in the world.

How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture points are areas of designated electrical sensitivity. Inserting needles at these points stimulates various sensory receptors that, in turn, stimulate nerves that transmit impulses to the brain and releasing neurotransmitters and endorphins, the body’s natural pain-killing hormones. It is estimated that endorphins are 200 times more potent than morphine. This is why acupuncture works well for back pain and arthritis as well as P.M.S. and infertility.

The substances released as a result of acupuncture not only relax the whole body, they regulate serotonin in the brain which plays a role in human and animal disposition. This is why depression is often treated with acupuncture.

Some of the physiological effects observed throughout the body include increased circulation, decreased inflammation, relief from pain, relief of muscle spasms.

Does it hurt?

The sensation of receiving an acupuncture treatment can rarely be described as painful. Now that is not to say that it is devoid of sensation. But, generally the feeling is more of a tingling. Acupuncture needles have a doweled end and therefore do not cut the skin as regular injection needles do. Following treatment it is common for the patient to feel a tremendous sense of relaxation, and/or exhilaration.

Is it safe?

The answer relies on the skill of the practitioner. When practiced by a licensed, trained acupuncturist here in our Surrey wellness centre, acupuncture is extremely safe. The importance of seeking an appropriately trained practitioner cannot be overstated.

Are there any contraindications for acupuncture?

There are very few situations where acupuncture is not advised. These are the most common:

If the patient has a hemophiliac condition. If the patient has a severe psychotic condition, or is under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

What conditions does acupuncture treat?

The World Health Organization (WHO) lists approximately four dozen different conditions that can be treated by acupuncture. The most common uses for acupuncture in the west include: Pain management, asthma, drug abuse, alcoholism, smoking, stroke, gastrointestinal disorders, gynecological and obstetric problems, sexual problems, headache, insomnia, losing weight, frozen shoulder, sciatica, cervical spondylosis, tennis elbow, pain management, menstruation problems, paralysis, etc.

Acupuncture is a holistic medicine that empowers the body to heal itself. It addresses the root of the problem, not just the symptom. Acupuncture is gentle and relaxing to receive. It’s often more effective for chronic ailments than western medicine. Acupuncture is a natural healing method that supports the body, rather than the more invasive methods of drugs or surgery. It’s proven to help with fertility issues. Acupuncture treatment has an extremely low probability of side-effects. It does no harm; it can only help.

At Back and Body Wellness Centre, we also offer other whole body solutions, including massage therapy and weight loss options. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment!