Acupuncture

What is Acupuncture? Acupuncture is a treatment derived from ancient Chinese medicine in which fine needles are inserted at certain sites in the body for therapeutic or preventative purposes. More broadly, acupuncture is a family of procedures involving the stimulation of anatomical locations on or in the skin by a variety of techniques. The practitioner may also stimulate the acupuncture points using other methods, including moxibustion, cupping, laser therapy, electro-stimulation, massage and may give chinese medicine dietary advice or herbs in order to re-establish the flow of qi.

Broadly speaking, acupuncture has three primary effects:

  1. It relieves pain.
  2. It reduces inflammation.
  3. It restores homeostasis.

Traditional health care & a modern profession. There are a number of different approaches to diagnosis and treatment at Lotus Family Acupunctre that incorporate medical traditions from China and western medical diagnosis.  Acupuncture takes a holistic approach to understanding normal function and disease processes and focuses as much on the prevention of illness as on the treatment. Stress, overwork, poor diet, disease pathogens, weather and environmental conditions, and other lifestyle factors and becomes evident to TCM practitioners through observable signs of bodily dysfunction. We look carefully for these signs of health and dysfunction, paying particular attention not only to the presenting signs and symptoms, but also to the medical history, general constitution, and the pulse and tongue.

As a natural form of healing, acupuncture has the following benefits:

  • provides drug-free pain relief
  • effectively treats a wide range of acute and chronic ailments
  • treats the underlying cause of disease and illness as well as the symptoms
  • provides an holistic approach to the treatment of disease and illness, linking body, mind and emotions
  • assists in the prevention against disease and illness as well as the maintenance of general well-being

Acupuncture is known to treat a wide range of disorders including:

  • Neurological conditions such as headaches, migraines, difficulty sleeping, nervous tension, stroke, some forms of deafness, facial and inter-costal neuralgia, trigeminal neuralgia, some forms of paralysis, sequelae of poliomyelitis, peripheral neuropathy, noises in the ears, dizziness, and Meniere’s disease.
  • Cardiovascular disorders such as high or low blood pressure, fluid retention, chest pain, angina pectoris, poor circulation, cold hands and feet, and muscle cramps.
  • Respiratory conditions such as bronchial asthma, acute and chronic bronchitis, acute tonsillitis, rhinitis, sinusitis, hay fever, chronic cough, laryngitis, sore throat, influenza and the common cold.
  • Digestive system disorders such as toothache, post-extraction pain, gingivitis, mouth ulcers, hiccough, spasms of the oesophagus, gastric and duodenal ulcers, gastric hyperacidity, gastritis, heartburn, hiatus hernia syndrome, flatulence, paralytic ileus, colitis, diarrhoea, constipation, haemorrhoids, liver and gall bladder disorders, and weight control.
  • Urogenital disorders such as cystitis, prostatitis, orchitis, low sexual vitality, urinary retention, kidney disorders, nocturnal enuresis, and neurogenic bladder dysfunction.
  • Gynaecological and obstetric disorders such as premenstrual tension, painful, heavy or irregular, or the absence of periods, abnormal uterine bleeding or discharge, hormonal disturbances, disorders associated with menopause, prolapse of the uterus or bladder, difficulty with conception, and morning sickness.
  • Skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, nerve rash, herpes zoster, acne, scar tissue and resultant adhesions, hair loss and dandruff.
  • Eye conditions such as visual disorders, red, sore, itchy or watery eyes, conjunctivitis, simple cataracts, myopia in children, and central retinitis.
  • Musculoskeletal disorders such as osteoarthritis, sciatica, lumbago, weak back, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, tenosynovitis, shoulder and neck pain, cervicobrachial syndrome, ‘frozen shoulder’, and ‘tennis elbow’.
  • Sporting injuries such as sprained ankles and knees, cartilage problems, corking and tearing of muscles, torn ligaments and bruises.
  • Psychological conditions such as depression, phobias, emotional disturbances, anxiety, nervousness and addictions such as smoking.

* The disorders above which appear in bold have been recognised by the World Health Organisation (December 1979) as having been successfully treated by acupuncture. The disorders which do not appear in bold above are other common disorders which have been found to respond well to acupuncture.

Findings from basic research have begun to elucidate the mechanisms of action of acupuncture, including the release of opioids and other peptides in the central nervous system and the periphery and changes in neuroendocrine function. Although much needs to be accomplished, the emergence of plausible mechanisms for the therapeutic effects of acupuncture is encouraging.

So what is the difference between Acupuncture & Dry Needling?
“The increasing prevalence of the term ‘dry needling’ has created some confusion. Qualified Acupuncturists study for 5 years full time to gain a degree in Acupuncture. A dry needling training program often runs for just two or three days – which is just enough time for people to gain a rudimentary understanding of how to ‘needle the point that hurts’ and perhaps deliver short-term symptom relief.”

For more information from AACMA (Australian Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Association) on ‘Dry Needling’ please click here