What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is finally gaining the recognition it deserves in Western medicine. Many health conditions can be effectively treated and managed with acupuncture.
The principle behind acupuncture is based on balance and “qi.” Qi (pronounced “chee”) is regarded in Eastern medicine as the measurable electromagnetic life force. Think of it as life-giving energy that flows through your body. In a sense, an analogy could be made with respect to blood flow through the body and the consequential oxygenation of tissue and release of energy into our cells. Qi passes through channels called meridians and it is necessary for the balance between yin & yang and for energizing different areas of the body.
In traditional Chinese acupuncture, there is a theory that many illnesses and conditions have to do with the blockage of qi and resulting imbalance between yin and yang. Acupuncture uses very fine needles and applies them to different points on the body to unblock the meridians and allow qi to flow. Some patients describe the sensation as energizing while others feel relaxed during and after acupuncture.
Western medicine hasn’t exactly adopted the idea of “qi”, but studies on acupuncture show promising results. There have been many documented reports of the benefits of acupuncture to relieve and manage chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, back pain, chronic pain from accident or injury, irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive disorders and even infertility.
The benefits may have something to do with the ability of acupuncture to release serotonin which relieves some of the negative effects of stress. Stress contributes to much of what makes us ill. Acupuncture can help the detoxification process thereby relieving deep tissue inflammation, which is quickly gaining recognition as a major cause and contributor to numerous health problems including cardiovascular disease and premature aging. For some, acupuncture may be the best alternative to conventional medicine. For others, it may work nicely as a complimentary treatment alongside conventional medicine.
Browse our articles to learn more about the benefits of acupuncture.