Osteopathy and Acupuncture Treatment
Acupuncture, what is it and its uses:
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a treatment which can relieve symptoms of some physical and psychological conditions and may encourage the patient's body to heal and repair itself, if it is able to do so.
Acupuncture stimulates the nerves in skin and muscle, and can produce a variety of effects. We know that it increases the body's release of natural painkillers - endorphin and serotonin - in the pain pathways of both the spinal cord and the brain. This modifies the way pain signals are received.
But acupuncture does much more than reduce pain, and has a beneficial effect on health. Patients often notice an improved sense of wellbeing after treatment.
Modern research shows that acupuncture can affect most of the body's systems - the nervous system, muscle tone, hormone outputs, circulation, antibody production and allergic responses, as well as the respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems.
In the past thirty years, because of the huge public interest in the subject, considerable scientific research on acupuncture has been carried out - although much remains to be done. We now know much more about how acupuncture works and some of the myths can be laid to rest. It is demonstrably untrue to say that the results of acupuncture are all in the mind.
Treatments will be tailored to the individual; so it is impossible to give more than a general idea of what treatment might involve. Typically, fine needles are inserted through the skin and left in position briefly, sometimes with manual or electrical stimulation. The number of needles varies but may be only two or three.
Treatment might be once a week to begin with, then at longer intervals as the condition responds. A typical course of treatment lasts 5 to 8 sessions.
Uses for acupuncture
Taking the above into consideration, here are some of the ways in which acupuncture may be effective:
- Pain relief for a wide range of painful conditions.
- It is commonly used to treat musculoskeletal pain, for example - back, shoulder, neck and leg pain.
- Headaches and migraines.
- Trapped nerves.
- Chronic muscle strains and sports injuries.
- Various kinds of arthritic and rheumatic pain.
This list is by no means exhaustive, but it does give a rough idea of the wide range of conditions that respond to acupuncture treatment.
ACUPUNCTURE DOES MUCH MORE THAN REDUCE PAIN, AND HAS A BENEFICIAL EFFECT ON HEALTH. PATIENTS OFTEN NOTICE AN IMPROVED SENSE OF WELLBEING AFTER TREATMENT.
Tim Wood Healthcare would like to thank the British Medical Acupuncture Society (BMAS) for the information provided about acupuncture. For more information on BMAS please visit www.medical-acupuncture.co.uk