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Nov 2021

What is Acupuncture?

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What Is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a key component of Traditional Chinese Medicine and is often used to treat acute and chronic pain and to help injuries heal. Acupuncture involves the manual stimulation of specific acupuncture points throughout the body using thin needles. Acupuncture can be used to treat a variety of conditions and has become an important aspect of many physiotherapy practices.

Acupuncture is the insertion of thin, metal needles to help stimulate specific points of the body that reach meridians. In Traditional Chinese Medicine there are about 365 commonly used acupuncture points and 20 meridians (channels) on the human body. There are other additional points that can also be used when treating musculoskeletal pain. Acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment that is typically performed over the course of several sessions usually about twice a week. Depending on what is being treated you may only need several treatments or something more ongoing especially when treating chronic pain. In some conditions such as arthritis and other conditions that are not curable acupuncture is often used to manage the pain and symptoms.

Acupuncture Treatment

Treatments typically involve needles to be used in specific locations of the area usually being treated when treating either painful conditions or muscle pains. Some treatments for stress, fibromyalgia and headaches to name a few may not have needles placed near the pain site. Depending on the number of treatment areas being treated generally 4 to 10 needles are used and sometimes more when there are several treatment areas. The needles are left in place for approximately 30 minutes and may be gently manipulated by the practitioner who will spin, flick and move the needles in and out of the skin, although the manipulation if required is generally done by electrical stimulation called electro-acupuncture. By doing so this helps to regulate the qi thoughout the body and helps restore health to the mind and body.

Although it is not exactly known how acupuncture works to relieve pain, many experts believe that is causes a release of endorphins in the body that stimulates the nerves, muscles and connective tissues and increases blood flow boosting the body’s natural painkillers.

Acupuncture can Help with Headaches and Neck Pain?

Are you someone who often gets headaches or migraines? If so you understand how they can impact your quality of life. It often can be difficult to think when your head is pounding. Many who do get headaches on a frequent basis often turn to medications such as painkillers, however frequent headaches are often a sign of something that may be wrong. Tension in the back of the neck can often lead to headaches. Relieving neck muscle tension can often result in positive relief from headaches and reducing the frequency of such headaches. Frequent headaches from an acupuncture standpoint can be from an imbalance in the ‘qi’, and by regulating the ‘qi’ can help with reducing headaches and frequency of such headaches.

Some studies suggest that acupuncture can reduce the frequency of both headaches and migraines in the short term. Those that received regular acupuncture treatments indicated that they experienced significantly fewer headaches than those on other types of headache relief. As well acupuncture usually has no side effects which makes the treatment safe and well tolerated. From the study it appears that regular acupuncture is a good choice to help prevent chronic headaches and migraines.

How Acupuncture Works Graphic

Can Acupuncture Help Relieve Stress?

Acupuncture has shown to provide excellent results with stress and we often see good results even after 1 or 2 visits. Research has shown that acupuncture stimulates the release of oxytocin which is a hormone that signals and regulates nervous system. Acupuncture for stress will help you get into the rest and relaxation mode. Once your body is in the mode to rest and relax then your body can help heal by reducing stress and any pain and inflammation associated with stress. An acupuncturist will help assess your condition and provide treatments that are specifically for the individual. Not only will it help relieve stress but acupuncture can help many aspects of life such as pain, headaches, muscle tension and spasms and can also help with sleep as well.

Acupuncture is often painless and can be quite relaxing. I often use a TDP lamp which stands for Electromagnetic Health Lamp which was invented in China and is a new type of therapeutic health device. The main function of the lamp is to reduce inflammation and pain and has been very effective in treating muscle spasms and tension, soft tissue injuries as well as arthritis symptoms. It also feels very relaxing when used in conjunction with acupuncture.

Acupuncture is also very effective and used in the treatment of:

  • Relieving chronic pain
  • Help treat lower back pains
  • Relieve muscle stress and muscle spasm
  • Relieve and reduce headaches, tension headaches and migraines
  • Reduce the symptoms of arthritis and fibromyalgia
  • Treat chronic knee pains and other extremity conditions

Acupuncture for Stress Relief

If you have any questions about Acupuncture or for what conditions Acupuncture can help please contact Dynamic Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic Inc. at 905-273-5433 or via our website at www.dynamicphysiotherapy.ca

Appointments can also be schedule online via our website and we can also directly bill most insurance companies.

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