The use of acupuncture as a healing therapy has been used since it originated in China. The practice uses the insertion and manipulation of acupuncture needles to help relieve pain and to cure illnesses. It is presently taught and used around the globe, and has become a very popular alternative treatment method. There have been many medical studies that still have yet to disprove the controversy that surrounds this type of treatment, and researchers continue to try to both prove and disprove the health benefits that acupuncture claims. There are many uses for acupuncture today. These include treating labor pains, migraines, dental pain, osteoarthritis, lower back pain and many other pains, in both men and women.
An acupuncturist will use inspection, auscultation and olfaction when they are diagnosing a patient. The inspection will be concentrated on the face and the tongue. Auscultation and olfaction concentrates on the whole body. The healing therapist will ask many questions of their patient when diagnosing their problem and considering whether acupuncture is a viable option for treatment. Questions will include the sensations the patient feels, such as chills, a fever, hunger and thirst, perspiration habits, bowel movements, their level of pain, sleep patterns and more. Palpitation will involve the searching for spots on the body that may be tender, as well as inspecting both the right and the left pulses of the patient.
The tools that are used for acupuncture include stainless steel needles that vary in diameter. These disposable needles come in sizes that are much smaller than a conventional injection needle used in hospitals, and the size and type used will depend on the type of acupuncture performed. Variations on the technique will include warming by moxibustion, varying insertion depths, manipulating the needle when inserted, and the removal. The most common treatment plan will include anywhere from six through twelve procedures, performed over a period of several months, to address a single health concern. Many people follow up with treatments for years to come.
With acupuncture treatments, you will have anywhere from five to twenty needles inserted into your skin at different depths. After they have been placed, the acupuncturist will gentle move or twirl the needles, apply heat or a mild electric pulse, and then remove the needles in about 20 to 30 minutes. As long as the patient lies still and relaxes, the insertion and removal of all the needles does not generally cause any pain.
However, acupuncture is an invasive procedure, and there may be risks and side effects involved. Bruising and bleeding in the areas of the needles can occur. Infection, fainting and nausea are side effects that some people experience, and some may even have an increase in pain. An improper insertion of an acupuncture needle can cause stroke, nerve injury or brain damage. Therefore, it is highly imperative that thorough research is done to discover the reputation, credentials and training of any acupuncturist considered. Patients who may be or are pregnant should avoid the acupuncture treatment, as should those with a bleeding disorder or pacemaker.
Within a few weeks of acupuncture treatment, patients should begin to notice an improvement in their pain. However, acupuncture is not for everyone, and this therapy may not be the right one for your ailment. Talk to an acupuncturist at length before undergoing this treatment to determine if this type of therapy is suitable for your needs.