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Acupuncture

Acupuncture is the treatment of physical and emotional disease by influencing points on meridians,or “lines on energy”, which interconnect across the body surface. It affects the physiological functioning of the body by the insertion of fine needles into a few specific points around the body.

With a history of almost 3000 years it is used extensively today to treat millions of people around the world for most health problems ranging from colds and flus to neck and back problems to insomnia, chronic fatigue and emotional conditions. It can also be used for health enhancement, to assist in sports performance, addiction withdrawal, and to improve your sense of well-being and vitality.

How Does Acupuncture Work?

Acupuncture is an important part of Traditional Chinese Medicine, along with Chinese herbal medicine, Tui Na (orthopaedic massage) and Qi Gong (meditation, exercise & energic healing techniques). Yin and Yang are the underlying principles of Chinese philosophy and medicine. Good health is comes from a balance of Yin (negative, dark, and feminine) and Yang (positive, bright, and masculine). In traditional Chinese medicine theory, acupuncture regulates the flow of Qi (pronounced chee), a type of unseen energy or electro-magnetic force travelling in a system of channels or meridians which connect acupuncture points to tissues and organs.

Qi takes on many forms in the body, and is the force that warms us, digests our food, moves our limbs and basically keeps us alive. When the Qi, blood, fluids or spirit are somehow affected, the result is pain, discomfort, disease or emotional disturbances. Acupuncture can affect the flow of Qi in the channels and organs, thereby affecting hormones, nerves and muscles, immunity, circulation and so on.

What Problems Can Be Treated By Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is good for pain relief, treating many conditions as well as for health enhancement, to assist in sports performance, addiction withdrawal, and to improve your sense of well-being and vitality.  The World Health Organisation has deemed acupuncture a useful form of primary-care medicine for the following types of conditions:

  • Ear, nose & throat disorders: common cold, sinusitis, tonsillitis, hay fever, rhinitis and tooth pain.
  • Respiratory Disorders: Acute bronchitis and bronchial asthma.
  • Gastro-intestinal Disorders: Gastritis, indigestion duodenal ulcer, hiccoughs, colitis, constipation and diarrhoea.
  • Eye Disorders: Acute conjunctivitis, central retinitis, juvenile myopia and mild cataract.
  • Neurological & Musculo-skeletal: Trigeminal neuralgia, headache and migraines, facial palsy, shingles, peripheral neuritis, post-stroke syndromes, Meniere’s disease, neuralgia, bladder dysfunction, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow, sciatica, lower back pain and osteoarthritis.

In addition to this list, other problems commonly treated include menstrual, menopausal and pregnancy related problems, stress and depression, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, sports and other injuries, aching muscles and help with nicotine and other drug withdrawal.

Does It Hurt?

This depends on a number of factors, such as the sensitivity of the patient and the skill of the practitioner. The needles used in the clinic are very fine and are inserted using special insertion tubes, this combination reduces any sensation to a minimum so that most patients are unaware of the needles at all.

Do Acupuncturists Only Use Needles?

Acupuncturists use a variety of other techniques in the clinic besides needles. These include moxibustion (warming the skin), electro-stimulation, cupping, massage and Chinese herbs. Herbs may be needed in conjunction with a course of acupuncture to enhance the treatment. The formula will be specifically tailored for your condition, using powdered herbal formulae making them much easier to take.

Are The Needles Sterile?

The practitioners at the clinic use pre-sterilised single-use disposable acupuncture needles of the finest quality.

What Response Can I Expect From Acupuncture Treatment?

After treatment, you will usually feel a sense of general well-being and relaxation. Although individual responses vary, most people experience an improvement in sleep, digestion and energy levels. Some people experience a mild exacerbation of symptoms after the first treatment, but this does subside and will be followed by an improvement in the condition over subsequent treatments.

What Can I Do To Assist My Acupuncture Treatment?

Wear loose fitting clothing for acupuncture treatment and do not eat a heavy meal or consume alcohol before or after a treatment. After treatment, it is best to avoid vigorous exercise.

In general, a lifestyle, which includes a nutritious balanced diet, regular exercise, and adequate rest and relaxation, are essential ingredients for maintaining health.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

The number and frequency of treatments depends on how severe and long-standing the condition is, and how well each patient responds to therapy. A course of ten treatments will generally provide lasting relief for most chronic ailments. However, some acute problems may only require a single treatment, and some degenerative problems may need on going treatments. You will be given some idea of how you should respond in your initial consultation, and certainly experience an improvement in your first few treatments.

Are There Side Effects?

Because acupuncture regulates dysfunction, there are seldom any side effects from treatment. In a few cases some symptoms may seem worse for a day or so before they improve, this is a positive sign. Usually most people feel very relaxed after a treatment with a sense of well being that may last for days. In other cases seemingly unrelated symptoms may disappear without direct treatment.

Is Acupuncture Suitable For Children Or The Elderly?

Yes, age is not a barrier to treatment. Children respond very well to acupuncture and can be treated from day one on. It is very effective for all childhood problems including colic, eczema, reflux bedwetting etc. For a baby Shoni shin (children’s acupuncture) is used which is a form of massage using specially design instruments, moxa and cupping. Acupuncture treatment of elderly persons can improve their overall feeling of well being so they recover from many age related conditions.

Can I Have Acupuncture During Pregnancy?

Acupuncture is very effect in pregnancy to relieve complications such as morning sickness, indigestion, fatigue, abnormal bleeding and so on. It is often used to assist in turning breech presentation and during delivery of the baby, and for post-partum recovery. However, it is important that you tell your acupuncturist if you are or may be pregnant.

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