What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture can be used to fix long-term internal problems, structural problems and to re-energize and restore balance to the body.
Acupuncture is thousands of years old and can be used to treat many different conditions in today's modern day lifestyle, ranging from headaches to skin complaints but pain relief is its greatest success, such as back, neck and shoulder pain.
How does it work?
Extremely fine needles are inserted into specific point locations on the body which enhances the energy flow through the meridians to help regulate thebody’s natural energy and keep people healthy and balanced.
The needles are usually left in for roughly 15 - 20 minutes and the patient can relax during this time.
Its functions are to release tight muscles, remove blood stagnation and toxins (which are held in the muscles) and increase the circulation of blood and the flow of Qi (energy).
Depending on the persons complaint, electrodes can be attached to the ends of needles, (known as electro-acupuncture) in order to increase the stimulation by causing the needle to tremble deep inside the muscle tissue. This is achieved using a low voltage battery operated machine.
Electrical stimulation is most commonly associated with pain management as it promotes the release of endogenous neurotransmitters such as beta-endorphin, a natural analgesic.
It is believed that electro-acupuncture was developed in 1958, when acupuncturists in China began experimenting with it as a form of pain relief.
Does Electro-Acupuncture hurt?
Patients may experience a tingling/tapping sensation while being treated with electro-acupuncture, which is due to the electric current passing through the muscle tissue but this should not feel painful because the frequency and intensity of the impulse can be adjusted to suit every patients individual needs.
Are there any risks involved?
Electro-acupuncture should not be used on patients who have a history of seizures, epilepsy, heart disease or strokes, or on patients with pacemakers. It should also not be performed on a patient's throat, or directly over the heart.