Acupuncture in San Diego
An acupuncturist will place needles into an individual's body with the intention of balancing their energy. This, it is claimed, can help boost wellbeing and might treat some ailments. Conditions it is used for include different kinds of pain, such as headaches, blood pressure issues, and whooping cough, to name a few.
How Does It Work?
Traditional Chinese medicine explains that health is the outcome of a harmonious balance of the complementary extremes of "yin" and "yang" of the life force referred to as "qi," pronounced "chi." Illness is claimed to be the result of an imbalance of the forces.
Qi is said to flow through meridians, or pathways, in the human body. These meridians and energy flows are accessible with 350 acupuncture points in the body.
Inserting needles into these points with appropriate combinations is said to bring the energy flow back into correct balance.
There is no scientific evidence that the meridians of acupuncture points exist, and it is hard to verify that they either do or do not, but numerous studies suggest that acupuncture works for some conditions.
Some experts have used neuroscience to explain acupuncture. Acupuncture points are viewed as areas where nerves, muscles, and connective tissue can be stimulated. The stimulation increases blood flow, while at the same time triggering the activity of the body's natural pain relievers.
It is hard to set up investigations using proper scientific controls, due to the intrusive nature of acupuncture. In a clinical study, a control group would have to receive sham treatment, or a placebo, for results to be compared with those of legitimate acupuncture.
Some studies have concluded that acupuncture provides similar benefits to a patient as a placebo, yet others have indicated that there are some genuine benefits.
Research carried out in Germany has suggested that acupuncture may help alleviate tension headaches and migraines.
The NCCIH note that it has been proven to help in cases of:
- low back pain
- neck pain
- knee pain
- headache and migraine
They list other conditions that may benefit from acupuncture, but which need further scientific confirmation.
In 2003, the World Health Organization (WHO) noted a number of ailments in which they say acupuncture has been shown effective.
- high and low blood pressure
- chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting
- some stomach conditions, including peptic ulcer
- painful periods
- allergic rhinitis
- facial pain
- morning sickness
- rheumatoid arthritis
- tennis elbow
- dental pain
- reducing the risk of stroke
- inducing labor
Other conditions for which the WHO claim that acupuncture might help but more evidence is required include:
- postoperative convalescence
- substance, tobacco and alcohol dependence
- spine pain
- stiff neck
- vascular dementia
- whooping cough, or pertussis
- Tourette syndrome
The WHO also says that it might help treat a number of infections, including some urinary tract infections as well as epidemic hemorrhagic fever.
Acupuncture can be helpful in that:
- Performed correctly, it is safe.
- There are very few side effects.
- It can be effectively combined with other treatments.
- It can manage some types of pain.
- It might help patients for whom pain medications are not well-suited.
Acupuncture in San Diego
According to traditional Chinese medical theory, acupuncture points are located on meridians, through which vital energy runs. This energy is referred to as "qi" or "chi.".
An acupuncturist will analyze the patient and evaluate their condition, insert one or more thin, sterile needles, and offer suggestions on self-care or other complementary therapies, such as Chinese herbs.
The patient will be asked to lie down on their back, front, or one side, depending on where the needles are to be placed. The acupuncturist should use single-use, disposable, sterile needles. As each needle is inserted, the individual may experience a very brief stinging or tingling sensation.
After the needle is inserted, there is sometimes a dull ache at the base of the needle that then subsides. Acupuncture is usually relatively painless.
Sometimes the needles are heated or stimulated with electricity after insertion. The needles will remain in place for between 5 and 30 minutes. The number of treatments needed depend on the individual. A person with a chronic condition may need one to two treatments a week over several months. An acute problem normally improves after 8 to 12 sessions.