What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is an ancient therapy that has been used successfully for over 3000 years to promote health and longevity as well as relieve illness. It involves the insertion of thin, sterile needles into specific points on the body. Acupuncture needles are tiny — the size of two strands of hair or a cat’s whisker. Most people feel a slight sensation, but no pain upon insertion.
Modern View of Acupuncture
According to a Western viewpoint, acupuncture stimulates nerves, connective tissue, as well as the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) releasing hormones and neurotransmitters that boost painkiller chemicals. Through controlled trials, the World Health Organization (WHO) has found acupuncture beneficial for a variety of conditions including pain, depression, allergic rhinitis, stroke, labor induction, morning sickness, and menstrual dysfunction.
What Should I Wear?
The most used acupuncture points are located below the elbow/knee. Therefore, the best clothes to wear for your treatment are loose, comfortable clothes that can be easily rolled up to above the elbow or knee. Gowns are available, however, for your use.
How Does Acupuncture Work?
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), energy pathways (meridians) run throughout the body. These meridians are like interconnected highways in that an obstruction in one area causes a backup in another. When this energy pathway cannot flow smoothly, an imbalance occurs and illness results. Acupuncture restores the flow of energy by gently clearing this obstruction.
First Acu Treatment Expectations
In a first acupuncture treatment, the practitioner will ask numerous in depth questions that are important to gauge which organ system has a disharmony as well as to gain an idea of your overall constitution. The practitioner may also feel your pulse and look at your tongue. These are additional diagnostic tools. Remember that in ancient times, there was no x-ray and healers had to use outward manifestations of symptoms to judge what is going on internally.
How Should I Prepare?
It is very important to eat at least two hours before your acupuncture treatment. A light snack would work. But try to avoid coffee in the two hours before or after your treatment. As a stimulant, coffee inhibits the calming process of acupuncture by keeping you in a fight or flight mode.
Want to Learn More About How Acupuncture Relieves Pain?
Visit our blog post explaining acupuncture’s healing mechanism