Though acupuncture has been around for centuries, it is still a relatively new form of treatment in the United States. If you are not familiar with the practice and how it can help you, here's what you need to know.
What is acupuncture?
What are the benefits of acupuncture treatments?
Acupuncture is used to treat a variety of conditions, including pain, nausea, and fatigue. It is also used as a preventative measure for conditions such as migraines and carpal tunnel syndrome.
What are the risks of acupuncture treatments?
Acupuncture is generally considered to be safe when performed by a trained and licensed practitioner. However, there are some risks associated with the procedure, such as pain at the insertion site, bruising, and bleeding.
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture is thought to work by stimulating the nervous system and releasing chemicals in the body that help to reduce pain and promote healing.
Who can benefit from acupuncture treatments?
Acupuncture is most commonly used to treat pain. It is also used to treat a wide range of conditions, including:
- Migraines and headaches
- Stroke rehabilitation
- Menstrual cramps
- Lower back pain
- Side effects of chemotherapy
What should you expect during an acupuncture treatment?
Before beginning the treatment, your acupuncturist will ask about your medical history and symptoms. They will then select a specific point on your body to insert the needles. The needles are usually inserted into the skin at a shallow angle and are then left in place for 10-20 minutes.
You may feel a slight prick when the needles are inserted, but the procedure is generally not painful. The needles are much thinner than needles used in a clinical setting for vaccinations or drawing blood. Some people even report feeling a tingling sensation or a just dull ache when the needles are in place.
During the treatment, it is important to relax and remain still. You may be asked to lie down on a comfortable table or recline in a chair. This is because the movement can cause the needles to dislodge.
After the treatment, the needles will be removed and you will be able to return to your normal activities. It is important to drink plenty of water after the treatment to help flush out any toxins that may have been released during the session.
When do you feel the effects of the acupuncture treatment?
The effects of acupuncture are typically not immediate. It may take a few sessions before you start to notice any improvement in your symptoms. However, many people report feeling more relaxed after an acupuncture treatment.
If you are experiencing pain, nausea, or fatigue, acupuncture may be a treatment option for you. Talk to your doctor about whether acupuncture is right for you.