If you live with any type of pain, you know that it can negatively impact the quality of your life. To make matters worse, people often experience negative side effects on top of the pain when they take prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications.
It is for this reason that many people are now turning toward alternative and natural pain remedies. And this is when many discover the benefits of acupuncture.
What is Acupuncture Exactly?
Acupuncture has been used as a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practice for thousands of years. The practice is based on a simple premise: all health issues stem from a blockage in a person’s life force energy or ‘qi’.
By inserting very thin needles strategically throughout the body, an acupuncturist can restore a person’s flow of qi and balance their system, thereby stimulating the body’s natural ability to heal itself.
While Western researchers still don’t fully understand how acupuncture works, there are many different theories to account for its many benefits. One ideology suggests that it’s so beneficial because it stimulates the release of endorphins; your body’s natural pain-relieving chemicals.
Another suggests that acupuncture works so well by balancing our autonomic nervous system (which controls our regular bodily functions) as well as releasing the chemicals that regulate blood pressure, reduce inflammation, and calm the brain.
The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, which is a United States government agency that explores complementary and alternative medicine, has found acupuncture to be an effective treatment for a variety of ailments and conditions such as:
- lower back and neck pain
- joint pain
- headache and migraine
In 2003, the World Health Organization (WHO) put together the following list of conditions acupuncture has been proven effective for:
- nausea/vomiting caused by chemotherapy
- gastric conditions such as peptic ulcers
- allergic rhinitis
- painful periods, morning sickness, and even inducing labor
- rheumatoid arthritis
- body aches/pains, including sciatica
- dental pain and facial soreness
- hypertension and reducing stroke risk
Benefits of Acupuncture
Acupuncture offers some impressive benefits. To start, if performed by a trained specialist, it is an extremely safe procedure with little side effects. It can easily be combined with other, more traditional forms of treatments. It has also been shown to control some forms of pain, which can be very beneficial to those for whom pain medications are not suitable.
If you or someone you know would like to explore acupuncture for an illness or health issue you are dealing with, please call or visit our office.
Paola Gomez, Ph. D.
My approach as a bilingual therapist (English/Spanish) involves traditional psychodynamic therapeutic styles blended with attachment based and dialectical behavior models to provide a therapeutic relationship that facilitate the accomplishment of your short and long term goals through a fulfilling life. I also incorporate elements of mind-body and meditation to help you to listen to your body as your main source of signs to heal.