Acupuncture


Acupuncture is the insertion of extremely fine needles on the surface of the body to influence or change physiological functioning of the body. The acupuncturist stimulates certain points, called “acupoints”, along the course of meridians to help restore the normal balance and flow of “Qi” (pronounced “Chi”) so organs and bodily systems can work together in harmony. When Qi is balanced, the body can then repair itself and maintain its own health.

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What are the objectives of acupuncture?

The main objectives are:

  • To relieve pain and other symptoms
  • To strengthen the immune system
  • To balance, harmonize and integrate functions of the organs with each other, making for a unified healthy person rather than a collection of fragmented, disharmonious parts.

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What are acupuncture treatments like?

Acupuncture needles are fine, flexible and sterile. Deftly inserted into an acupoint by a skilled acupuncturist, the slender needle produces little to no sensation. When the needle makes contact with Qi, most patients experience tingling.

How many treatments and how often?

The number and frequency of treatments vary based on each patient’s health problems and response to treatment. Typically the recommendation is two to four treatments per week for eight to sixteen treatments. In general acute conditions require less treatment than chronic conditions.

What are meridians?

There are 14 primary meridians which form a highly complex network transporting and directing Qi to every part of the body, including the head, arms, legs torso, organs and systems. There are hundreds of points in the meridians where Qi can be accessed and stimulated, identified over millennia of experience and observation by Chinese practitioners.

What is Qi?

The body has an energy force called Qi, also known as the life force. Good health depends on a balanced distribution of Qi throughout the meridian network and influences the organs as well as all bodily systems: skeletal, muscular, endocrine, circulatory, digestive, respiratory, urinary, reproductive and nervous.

What happens when the flow of Qi becomes blocked?

Qi can become blocked by environmental triggers, organ malfunction, contagious diseases, injury, and emotional responses to life such as stress. If the flow of Qi is blocked or disrupted, the patient can become prone to pain, a weakened immune system, and ill health. A blockage of Qi may cause a deficiency of Qi beyond the blockage and a buildup of Qi behind the blockage, which may mean diminished activity of some organs and accelerated activity of others.

What can be done about blocked and unbalanced Qi?

The acupuncturist will first do an examination which may include several diagnostic procedures such as pulse diagnosis, observation, interviewing the patient, and doing a physical examination.

After an examination, the acupuncturist will make a diagnosis and begin to carry out a treatment plan to normalize the flow and distribution of Qi by stimulating selected acupoints.

Fine needles are inserted into the trigger points along the meridians to remove blockages, which restores energy flow and regulates the function of organs. The treatment plan often calls for treating one to twelve points on each visit, and each treatment averages one hour.

What are Yin and Yang?

The concept of Yin and Yang flows into Chinese medicine where the symbol helps us visualize the balancing act that goes on constantly in every entity of the human body, from the organs and bodily system to the smallest cell, as well as the vital force itself.

 



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