Acupuncture is a technique that uses very thin needles that are inserted at specific acupuncture points on the body. For most people, the needling process is painless, or minimally painful. The needles are typically left in for a short time while the patient lays on the table relaxing. For patients who do not want to be needled, I can access the acupuncture points and meridians manually (with my hands). Acupuncture has been used for thousands of years in China, and is now practiced all over the world. Over 3 million Americans used acupuncture in 2007, and that number is growing. Its widespread use is due in large part to the fact that it works, and works quickly. Many patients walk out of my office feeling significantly better that they did walking in. For others, the effects are not immediate, but they feel better over the next several days. Acupuncture is most researched for pain, but is part of the distinct medical system of Traditional Chinese Medicine and is used to treat a wide variety of medical conditions including:
- Gastrointestinal issues: nausea, diarrhea, constipation, gas.
- Neurological issues: neuropathy, headache, migraine, carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Musculoskeletal issues: pain, sprains, strains, weakness, muscle spasm, spinal stenosis, disc herniation, spondylolisthesis and ankylosing spondylitis.
- Cancer symptoms and cancer treatment side effects: nausea, fatigue, neuropathy, poor appetite, change in taste.
- Women’s health issues: menstrual issues, menopausal symptoms, hot flashes.
- Psychological issues: stress, anxiety, depression, panic attack.
- Addiction: smoking cessation support, other forms of tobacco, alcohol, etc.
Harvard Health Blog 1/25/2018: “The practice of acupuncture has emerged as an important nondrug option that can help chronic pain patients avoid the use of potentially harmful medications, especially opiates with their serious risk of substance use disorder.”https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/acupuncture-for-headache-2018012513146“