According to traditional Chinese medicine beliefs, energy flows throughout the body along channels, or “meridians.” Specific acupoints are stimulated to increase energy flow along various channels throughout the body to a particular tissue, organ, or organ system. Acupuncture is based on the movement of Qi. Qi is the life giving energy that circulates along channels to all organs of the body and enables them to function. When the Qi is abundant and flowing freely you thrive. If your Qi is depleted or obstructed symptoms may begin to arise. If the underlying problem is not properly addressed, more serious illnesses or diseases may affect your physical body, mental clarity or emotional stability. Acupuncture is used to treat the underlying disharmony and focuses on both the root cause and symptoms manifested by the imbalance.
Treatment is usually customized to treat each patient’s particular symptoms. A typical acupuncture session, which takes about 30 minutes, involves the insertion of ten to 20 very thin, stainless steel needles. Most patients receiving acupuncture experience no pain from the insertion of the needles, and there is minimal risk of injury from acupuncture treatments.
From a western medical perspective, the insertion of hair-fine sterile and disposable needles into subcutaneous layers of the skin can have profound influences on several regulatory systems. When used correctly, acupuncture has neurophysiological affects that can release pain-reducing endorphins; effect the metabolism of serotonin, a neurotransmitter (brain chemical) that effects both pain perception and mood; and improve circulation and immune function.
The acupuncture practitioner will take an individualized approach, tailoring treatments and medicine to each patient’s specific symptoms, presentations and overall health and life history in order to achieve successful healing. After careful listening and examination of a patient’s complaints, symptoms, their medical history, and current physical condition, a combination of therapies will be suggested to develop the most effective treatment plan to reduce your pain or other health ailment and improve your overall wellness.