Acupuncture is commonly used for pain management, but it can be used to treat a variety of other medical conditions. It has been used in China and other Asian countries for thousands of years, and it’s now a popular part of holistic medicine in LA and other cities around the world.
What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture has been a part of traditional Chinese medicine for many years. It’s a technique for balancing the flow of life energy that’s thought to flow through pathways within the body. It involves the insertion of very thin needles through the skin at strategic points on the body known as stimulation points. By inserting needles into specific stimulation points, it’s believed that the body’s natural energy flow will re-balance itself.
Is Acupuncture Effective?
Various health studies suggest that acupuncture can help reduce pain that’s often associated with neck and low-back problems; knee problems; joint and muscle aches; osteoarthritis; fibromyalgia; carpal tunnel syndrome; headaches; upper respiratory problems; and dental procedures. Some people feel relaxed after acupuncture treatments while others feel uplifted and energized. Although acupuncture treatments seem to affect people differently, they’re warranted to manage chronic pain since there are very few side effects.
Studies indicate that acupuncture causes multiple biological responses within the body. Some occur near the application site while others are controlled by the central nervous system which travel to the brain and periphery areas. There is also evidence that acupuncture causes alterations in the immune system which can relieve symptoms and promote healing.
Is Acupuncture Safe?
There are few reported complications from acupuncture treatments, and most complications are the result of non-sterile needles or improper techniques. If acupuncture treatments are not done properly, serious side effects including skin infections, punctured organs, collapsed lungs, and central nervous system damage may occur.
Many conventional physicians and dentists practice acupuncture. If you decide to have treatments, make sure you visit an acupuncturist with proper credentials. Although education and training requirements vary by state, most states require a license, certification, or registration to practice acupuncture. Look for a professional, qualified acupuncturist who’s trained in techniques and procedures and operates in a safe, sterile environment.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the use of acupuncture needles. They require needles to be manufactured and labeled to comply with certain health and safety standards. Acupuncture needles must be nontoxic, sterile, and labeled for single use only by qualified acupuncturists.