What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture originated in China more than 2000 years ago. It is a healing system that has been developed and used in many countries throughout the world. In China today it is used in hospitals throughout the country alongside Western medicine. Both contribute to the provision of health care. Acupuncture is recognized by the World Health Organization for its efficacy in treating a number of diseases.
How Does It Work?
There is no scientifically proven theory of how acupuncture works. Chinese medicine is based on the concept of energy (or Chi), something which has no equivalent in Western medicine but can be partially defined as including one's vital energy or life force. The health, vitality and disposition of the individual is influenced by the Chi that exists within the body, which also influences the circulation of blood, the ability to fight-off disease, and body movements. There are many different types of Chi circulating in the body - more than a dozen basic forms and more than a dozen accessory forms. The Chi is distributed and flows throughout the body in a network of interconnecting channels or meridians which flow at various levels deep within the organs and below the skin where it can be influenced with acupuncture needles. Illness occurs mainly due to an excess, deficiency or stagnation of Chi, and the purpose of acupuncture is to correct imbalances of Chi through the insertion of needles at specific points on the meridians.
What can acupuncture treat?
ACUPUNCTURE is successful in treating the following conditions:
Abdominal pain, appetite loss, constipation, diarrhoea, haemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome, nausea and vomiting.
Arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, hip pain, low back pain, neck & shoulder pain and sports injuries.
Facial paralysis, headache, trigeminal neuralgia and urinary problems.
Breech baby, carpal tunnel syndrome, constipation, haemorrhoids, induction of labour, indigestion, insufficient lactation, morning sickness, post-natal depression and sciatica.
Anxiety, stress, depression, smoking addiction.
Asthma, bronchitis, common cold, cough, hay-fever and sinusitis.
Menstrual problems, infertility, painful periods and menopause.
Anaemia, high blood pressure, low libido, insomnia, lethargy and pain after operations.
What Can I Expect During a Consultation and Treatment?
Chinese medicine has its own complete system of diagnosis. The practitioner must make a thorough diagnosis which includes a complete case history of presenting and past health problems, diet, lifestyle and general health. Examination of the radial pulse and tongue are also necessary to provide an indication of the balance of Chi, and the state and progression of the disease. The practitioner will then determine which acupuncture points need to be needled. Needles may be left in place for up to 20-30 minutes, and the entire consultation is usually about one hour. Although the first consultation is longer (about 1.5 hours) as a very detailed history is typically taken and discussed at the first visit.
How Many Consultations and Treatments May I Need?
Acupuncture treats the individual rather than just diseases, and individual factors such as energy state, disease duration, life style and diet can all influence the disease and have a bearing on the time for healing. Generally treatments are weekly at the outset, and the time between treatments can be extended as symtpoms improve. Improvement is usually noticed over a series of treatments from one through up to six or more as necessary.