What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is arguably one of the first forms of recognised health care solutions in the world. A highly trained acupuncturist will be able to use subtle ways of diagnosing a patient, the acupuncture therapist will be able to utilise techniques that have been developed and refined over thousands of years.
The acupuncturist will focus on you as a whole rather than just the illness because they will see all your symptoms in relation to each other or in a holistic way.
The treatment involves putting very fine acupuncture needles into certain points on the body. The reason for this is so that it can interact and affect the flow of your body‚ qi, or vital energy.
Does acupuncture hurt?
The short answer is very rarely. This is because acupuncture needles nowadays are made with such precision that they are barely the width of a hair, sometimes you may feel something as they enter your body but it is more often a tingling than anything painful. I once had acupuncture for stress during a rather hectic time of my life and fell asleep despite having 20 needles in my back!
What can Acupuncture be used for?
National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines recommend acupuncture can be used for
Although many people turn to acupuncture to help with
- chronic pain, such as neck pain
- joint pain
- dental pain
- postoperative pain
Some acupuncture practitioners use acupuncture to treat a far wider range of conditions, including:
- postoperative nausea and vomiting
- allergies, including hay fever
- fatigue, including fatigue in cancer patients after chemotherapy
- depression and anxiety
- digestive disorders, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- infertility and menstrual disorders
- a ‘dry mouth’ (xerostomia)
However, the evidence is not conclusive regarding the effectiveness of acupuncture for many of these conditions.