It seems that the answer these days is a resounding “YES!” Western medicine relies on hard facts, and with the US Library of Medicine listing more than 23,000 studies on acupuncture, the evidence of acupunctures efficacy is undeniable. Another part is the desire/need for alternative treatments that are holistic, non-invasive and painless solution to a variety of health issues.
How does it work? A typical treatment involves the painless insertion of very thin needles on key points of the body in order to stimulate the body’s natural healing process. These key points run along channels called meridians in which energy known as Qi (chee), flows to all parts of the body including our organs. When a meridian is blocked, the organ at the end experiences distress and can cause pain or illness. Unblocking the meridian causes the body to release natural chemicals like endorphins, serotonin and relieves inflammation.
What are some common health issues that acupuncture can help?
Chronic back pain affects about 80% of us at one time or another and is the second most common cause of disability in America according to a study by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Another study showed that patients arriving at an Emergency Room in Melbourne Australia showed that patients treated with acupuncture experienced the same amount of pain relief as the ones that were given drugs.
With headaches, acupuncture has a long track record for relieving pain from migraines and tension headaches. A recent study showed that acupuncture cut in half the number of day’s patient experienced migraines. When they did have one, the pain was greatly reduced.
With asthma and allergies over 25 million Americans have asthma. That includes 6.8 million children. Research shows that ongoing treatment reduced asthma symptoms and use of inhaled steroids. When acupuncture treatment stopped, symptoms and inhaler use returned to previous levels. Similar results were found in a separate study on allergies and antihistamine use. Of particular note was that if a health problem is controlled in childhood it is less likely to become chronic in adulthood. As a plus, acupuncture for children rarely requires the uses of needles. Since their Qi flows very close to the surface of their skin, usually all that is required is a light brushing or rubbing along the meridian path to get things flowing along. Kids usually love it and respond very well.
With digestive problems, acupuncture has been used successfully to treat colic in babies, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), morning sickness, and post operative nausea caused by anesthesia and chemotherapy. The World Health Organization notes that acupuncture relieves nausea better than atropine injections.
Continued Wellness takes a lifelong commitment to fitness, acupuncture should be used on a therapeutic level for one’s life. Doing this will ensure a lifetime of maintaining good health and keeping our bodies operating at optimum levels.