Acupuncture practice based on Chinese medicine principles that have been researched and refined for over 2000 years. Acupuncture regulates the flow of Qi around the body through pathways called meridians and promote the body’s self-healing response. Fine needles are inserted into the skin at various points on the meridians along which Qi flows. In recent years medicine scientists have discovered myofascial pathways that follow the meridians recorded by the early acupuncturists,and the concept of Qi itself may overlap with developing knowledge of how cells in the body communication
Does acupuncture work?
What is the evidence?
Evidence of acupuncture's effectiveness is growing as researchers evaluate the best ways to measure how the body reponds to it. To date the focus has been on pain management. Around the world,clinical studies are being conducted to understand how acupuncture can be beneficial for mant more conditions. You can read fact sheets about the latest acupuncture research at www.acupuncture.org.uk
Can it help me?
Acupuncture is considered to be beneficial for a wide range of conditions. NICE, Nation Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends acupuncture on the NHS for back pain,migraines and headaches. The respected Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network(SIGN) recommends acupuncture for chronic pain. Because an acupuncture treatment is designed to affect your whole body,not just your symptoms.
Who has acupuncture?
Many people come to acupuncture for help with specific symptoms or to relieve specific pains like osteoarthritis of the knee. Some use acupuncture because they feel generally unwell but have no obvious diagnosis. Others choose acupuncture simply to enhance their feeling of wellbeing. Acupuncture is considered suitable for all ages including babies and children. It can be used effectively alongside conventional medicine.
What can it do for me?
Some people turn to acupuncture for help with a specific symptom or condition. Others choose to have treatment to help maintain good health, as a preventive measure, or simply to improve their general sense of wellbeing. Because traditional acupuncture aims to treat the whole person rather than specific symptoms in isolation, it can be effective for a range of conditions.
Remember that acupuncturists treat the person, not just the condition which they have, so each patient's treatment plan will be different. However, you can always ask your practitioner about other patients' experiences, to give you an idea of what to expect. Many people return to acupuncture again and again because they find it so beneficial and relaxing.
In 2009 the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence recommended that acupuncture should be made available on the NHS, as a cost-effective short-term treatment for the management of early, persistent non-specific lower back pain.