Sourced from: healthdigezt.com
Acupuncture involves the insertion of needles into the skin at specific points on the body. These needles stimulate the nervous system to increase blood circulation to specific areas, which in turn, increases the healing in that area. The goal is not only to treat the pain, but to improve function to the entire body.
Acupuncture points are known to stimulate the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) to release chemicals through our endocrine system, hormonal system and vascular system. These chemicals can change or block pain signals and can re-program any malfunctioning organ or signalling system. These biochemical changes stimulate the body’s natural healing abilities and promote physical and emotional well being.
Acupuncture needles are very thin, and most people feel no pain or very little pain when they are inserted. They often say they feel energized or relaxed after the treatment.
You may try acupuncture for symptomatic relief of a variety of diseases and conditions, including but not limited to:
Studies that test how well acupuncture works against the pain of fibromyalgia have had mixed results. Some showed that it provided temporary pain relief, but others did not. A small study by the Mayo Clinic suggested that acupuncture may reduce two other problems of fibromyalgia: fatigue and anxiety. But overall, there’s not enough evidence yet to prove that acupuncture works for fibromyalgia.
Acupuncture may help relieve migraines or tension headaches. Two large studies found that people receiving acupuncture had fewer days with tension headaches than those receiving conventional care.
Low back pain
If standard treatments don’t relieve your chronic low-back pain, acupuncture may do the job, and two respected medical groups suggest that people in this situation give it a try. One large study found that both actual and “sham” acupuncture worked better than conventional treatments for back pain that had lasted more than three months. The jury’s still out on acupuncture for short-term (acute) pain in the low back.
Acupuncture can be a helpful addition to conventional treatment for osteoarthritis, says the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. And some of the most promising, early research has shown acupuncture eased arthritis pain in the knee. However, more research is needed to prove without a doubt that it’s effective for osteoarthritis.
Acupuncture provides relief from the pain of tooth extraction or dental surgery, but so does sham acupuncture, some studies show. Still, dental pain is considered by many to be one of the conditions that responds to acupuncture.
Medicine and Rehabilitation in San Francisco1suggests that acupuncture not only relieves the symptoms of tennis elbow, it appears to resolve the condition completely.
In the study, Dr. Peter Dorsher, a medical doctor certified in acupuncture, performed acupuncture on 22 patients with varying degrees of tennis elbow. Dorsher used “rounded” acupuncture needles, which are designed to pierce the skin and enter the muscle with as little damage as possible. All of the patients were treated with French energetic meridian therapy, with needles inserted at local points on the elbow in tight myofascial bands.
Acupuncture was tested and compared with steroid pills for the hand and arm pain of carpal tunnel syndrome. Researchers in Taiwan gave one group eight acupuncture treatments, over about a month, and those patients reported more relief, for a longer time, than the group taking medicine. While studies like this have been promising, more evidence is still needed to confirm that acupuncture is effective for carpal tunnel syndrome.
Brazilian researchers recently published research finding that acupuncture therapy alleviated heartburn and indigestion in pregnant women. One group of pregnant women was given a combination of acupuncture and medications, and another group was counseled on dietary changes and given medications if needed. Over the course of the study, 75% of the women in the acupuncture group saw heartburn intensity, and antacid use, decline, while only 44% of women in the standard-treatment group saw those same effects.
Counteracts Radiation Side Effects
Cancer patients undergoing radiation treatment are likely to suffer a variety of side effects, depending on the part of the body being treated. However, acupuncture therapy has been found to have some effect on the perception of how bad those effects can be, particularly for nausea and dry mouth, common in patients receiving radiation to the head and neck. A review of studies published in CA, a journal of the American Cancer Society, found that people undergoing radiation treatment perceived fewer negative side effects of radiation even though the side effects may still be there. For instance, in one study, patients who wore acupressure bands during treatment said they felt less nausea, although they still had the same occurrence of vomiting as they did before wearing the band, and in another study, people said they had less of a problem with dry mouth, even though measures of their saliva showed that levels remained the same. The acupuncture didn’t actually alleviate the symptoms, but it did help improve patients’ quality of life after treatment.