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Acupuncture, which originated
in China over 5,000 years ago, is a way of adjusting
the body's "life
energy" (Qi or Chi) flow.
It involves the insertion of hair-thin needles
into carefully selected acupuncture points along
the meridians (energetic pathways) of the body.
The acupuncture points are selected on the basis
of your health condition from unique pulse and
tongue diagnosis, observation and questioning.
The points affect the meridian system. Each meridian
has a specific effect on a specific body system
or organ of the body. By restoring harmonious
function in the body and the mind, most symptoms
of disease can be effectively treated.
Acupuncture can be used to solve
the root cause of health problem naturally as
well as to promote general health and well-being.
charts on both sides, typical of those traditionally
used by Chinese doctors, illustrate the acupoints
along the stomach meridian.
It has been proven by clinical trial that acupuncture
strengthens the immune system and serves to prevent
disease, control pain and increase both the ability
to function and the quality of people's lives.
Acupuncture is not just a tool for the relief
of Pain. It has wide therapeutic applications,
treating diseases that affect both the body as
a whole organism and specific functions, although
its strength lies in the area of functional disorders.
It can be used to treat both acute and chronic
disease, including infections, in both children
||How does acupuncture
While Western doctors star with
a symptom, then look for a specific cause, Traditional
Chinese Medicine regards the symptom as part of
a "pattern of disharmony".
According to the classical doctrines of Chinese
medicine, health is achieved through the harmonious
balance between the opposing forces of Yin
(spirit) and Yang (blood). Yin qualities are
typically coldness, weakness, hollowness, and
dark, while the opposite yang qualities are heat,
strength, solidity, and light. The attraction
between yin and yang creates a vital energy known
as Qi (pronounced "chee")or Chi which
flows to all parts of the body through 14 channels
The meridians cannot be seen by the naked eye,
but modern science has shown that their existence
can be detected electrically. Most of the meridians
connect to one of the major internal organs, and
the Qi power enables the organ to function effectively.
When the energy flow is smooth
and in balance, one is healthy. Any imbalance
in those forces is believed to cause illness.
For example, a person with a high fever, bright
red cheeks, and intense headache would be someone
with an excess of yang, while someone with symptoms
of chronic fatigue, pallor, and cold limbs would
have an excess of yin. Treatment, including acupuncture,
acupressure, and herbal medicine, aim to restore
the yin/yang balance.
There are more than 360 specific points along
the meridians called "Acupoints" connected
to organs or systems in the body. When acupuncture
points are stimulated, it changes the flow of
bioelectrical energy along the nerves and releases
neurotransmitters, primarily endorphins, which
are the body's pain relievers, the same chemical
that produces a sense of relaxation. Studies showed
that the brain's endorphin had doubled a half
hour after acupuncture treatment. The release
of painkilling endorphins play a big role in the
functioning of the hormonal system. This is why
acupuncture works well for headache, neck pain,
back pain and arthritis. Endorphin release through
acupuncture not only relaxes the whole body but
also regulate serotonin in the brain. This is
why depression is often effectively treated with
Acupuncture stimulates your body's own healing
abilities - your innate power to heal yourself.
It is a natural healing, which will fix the root
cause of the problem NOT just the symptoms.
effective is acupuncture treatment?
In 1980, The World Health Organization, a branch
of the United Nations, released a list of 41
types of diseases which can be effectively
treated with acupuncture. In 1994, the FDA was
presented with 500 pages of research claiming
that acupuncture treatments can help with at least
five major conditions; pain, asthma, nausea, stroke
and addiction. In 1996, the FDA reclassified the
acupuncture needles as Class II medical devices.
In early November, 1997, a consensus panel convened
by the National
Institutes of Health (NIH) concluded that
there is clear evidence that acupuncture treatment
is effective for postoperative chemotherapy nausea
and vomiting, nausea of pregnancy, and postoperative
dental pain. NBC News reported the findings. The
panel also concluded that acupuncture may be an
effective therapy for addiction,
stroke rehabilitation, headache,
pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and asthma.
In California, acupuncturists are recognized
as primary health care providers.
In addition, auto
compensation, and some some health
insurance plans cover the cost of acupuncture
Same as Chinese herbal medicine, acupuncture
is highly effective not only as a preventive medicine,
but also as a drug free treatment of signs and
symptoms. Studies by National Institutes of Health,
Oxford University and Boston University School
of Medicine, suggest that acupuncture dramatically
controls pain because the stimulation of acupuncture
points affects the nervous system, triggering
the release of endorphins and enkephalins (natural
painkilling chemical substances). Other research
suggests that acupuncture may also prompt the
release of certain brain hormones, including serotonin,
which transmit nerve impulses.
"It's time to take
acupuncture seriously" said the
panels Chairman, Dr. David J. Ramsey of the University
Although the use of acupuncture to treat conditions
in ancient China is based on the experience of
doctor, a body of scientific evidence now exists
to support it. Some of the most convincing research
into the therapeutic effects of acupuncture, published
in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine
in 1988, was carried out by Professor John Dundee
of Queen's University, Belfast. His research confirmed
that stimulating an acupoint approximately 2 in
(5 cm) above the crease of the wrist closest to
the hand relieved and even eliminate nausea and
vomiting in early pregnancy. According to a 1989
study in the British Journal of Anesthesia, the
same point could also be used to treat nausea
following general anesthesia and chemotherapy.
In 1989, The Lancet reported that patients with
alcohol addiction responded well to acupuncture.
A Swedish study in 1989 found that acupuncture
eased post-surgical pain. American studied in
1982 and 1980 showed that it relieved neck pain
and lower back pain respectively.
Much evidence exists for acupoints having lower
electrical resistance than non-acupuncture sites.
In a Spanish study in 1992, radioactive tracers
injected at acupoints seemed to travel along meridian
pathways, leading to theories of information transmission
linked to neurochemicals rather than to the circulatory
or lymphatic system.
Clinical results indicate that, just as automobiles
need a tune-up to prevent a break down, people
also need a Health
Tune-up® to find and fix small problems
before they become big ones.
Serious problems begin with symptoms like stress,
energy, repetitive stress, insomnia
and pain. Many people find that occasional acupuncture
tune-up is the best medicine to feel "in
sync" and insure continuing health.
acupuncture treatment safe?
Many people would like to try acupuncture but
are put off because they assume it will be painful
and may feel that it takes a great deal of courage
to 'inflict' the needles on themselves. Actually,
the acupuncture needles have no resemblance to
hypodermic syringes. Acupuncture needles are solid
and hair-thin. At least 15 needles can fit into
one conventional hypodermic needle! Also, the
acupuncture needles have a doweled end, not a
cutting end like most hypodermic needles, and
therefore are far less likely to cause tissue
damage or bruising when inserted.
Acupuncture needles are gently placed at the
specific gateways of the body. Some people feel
a sting when an acupuncture needle is inserted
but not real pain. It is interesting that, sometimes,
patients ask, with eyes closed and teeth clenched,
"When are you going to put the needles in"?,
and they are often surprised to learn that the
needles are in place already.
Acupuncture treatment is safe. Infection through
needles is prevented by using disposable needles.
should I expect from the treatment?
The first visit starts with an extensive interview
and history with a physical exam. The physical
exam is unique. The feel of the pulses and the
appearance of the tongue, eyes and face are invaluable
aids to diagnosis; all give insight into the condition
of the internal organs, the flow of internal energy
in the meridians and the balance of yin and yang
in the body. The first visit usually takes about
one hour including the treatment time. Subsequent
visits last from 40 to 50 minutes. The treatment
involves the insertion of hair-thin needles into
appropriate acupuncture points along the energy
pathways as well as the use of other techniques
such as Chinese
herbal medicine, acupressure
(Oriental massage), and electro-stimulation.
Most patients find the treatment very relaxing,
which brings on a feeling of well-being. As a
sign of obtaining the vital energy, some patients
may have a slight sensation of soreness, numbness,
distention, or heaviness around the needles. The
beneficial reaction usually starts during the
first four or five visits. Some patient feel the
effect even after the first visit. Nevertheless,
just like any other medical treatment, not all
diseases can be cured. However, there is no harmful
effect from the therapy in common practice. Therefore,
people who suffer from lingering or chronic diseases
and do not respond well to orthodox medicine are
particularly encouraged to try this promising
Chinese art of healing.
many treatments will I need?
Each person is unique. The acupuncture treatment
is based on an individualized pattern diagnosis
as well as a disease diagnosis. Therefore, the
treatment plan is individualized. The frequency
of subsequent visits will vary depending on the
type of illness, the severity of the condition,
the duration of sickness, and patient's response
to the treatment. being.
A course of treatment usually takes ten sessions,
more or less. In order to get the best therapeutic
result, acute cases should be treated daily for
a few days, then in prolonged intervals. However,
chronic cases usually need two or three visits
per week. In case of a slow reaction, the patient
should still try to complete the entire course,
because most of these cases require more effort
to restore the energy balance.