What does acupuncture do and how does it work?

Acupuncture points are believed to stimulate the central nervous system. This, in turn, releases chemicals into the muscles, spinal cord, and brain. These biochemical changes may stimulate the body’s natural healing abilities and promote physical and emotional well-being.

What are the benefits of getting acupuncture?

Acupuncture is used mainly to relieve discomfort associated with a variety of diseases and conditions, including:

  • Chemotherapy-induced and postoperative nausea and vomiting.
  • Dental pain.
  • Headaches, including tension headaches and migraines.
  • Labor pain.
  • Low back pain.
  • Neck pain.
  • Osteoarthritis.
  • Menstrual cramps.

How long does it take for acupuncture to work?

Acupuncture has a short term effect. The period of time you will feel its therapeutic benefits is around 3-4 days. If you are having it only and your problem isn’t chronic, you can have it once a week.

Does acupuncture actually relieve pain?

Traditional Chinese acupuncture involves the insertion of extremely fine needles into the skin at specific “acupoints.” This may relieve pain by releasing endorphins, the body’s natural pain-killing chemicals, and by affecting the part of the brain that governs serotonin, a brain chemical involved with mood.

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What conditions can be treated with acupuncture?

National Institutes of Health (NIH) studies have shown that acupuncture is an effective treatment alone or in combination with conventional therapies to treat the following:

  • Nausea caused by surgical anesthesia and cancer chemotherapy.
  • Dental pain after surgery.
  • Addiction.
  • Headaches.
  • Menstrual cramps.
  • Tennis elbow.

What should you not do after acupuncture?

Here’s what to avoid after acupuncture.

  • Strenuous Exercise. You don’t have to avoid exercise altogether, but it would probably be best to slow down a bit. …
  • Caffeine. …
  • Alcohol. …
  • Junk Food. …
  • Ice. …
  • TV and Other Screens.

How do you know acupuncture is working?

Well, you should treat your body the same. When you first start doing acupuncture you’ll notice bodily sensations more acutely, that is to say, you will be more aware of the little things you didn’t notice before and more clued in to how your body is functioning overall. Your senses will be keener and more awakened.

Do you get immediate relief from acupuncture?

You may not experience immediate pain relief from your first acupuncture treatment (although many patients do). A typical treatment course is six to 10 visits, and we generally expect to see some improvement by the sixth visit.

How long do the benefits of acupuncture last?

As you continue acupuncture treatment, you’ll notice that your pain decreases and other symptoms gradually improve. You may find that acupuncture effects can last a week or longer, and you can schedule appointments less frequently.

How often should you have acupuncture?

For instance, we often suggest getting acupuncture treatment two or three times a week for the first few weeks. After that initial series of acupuncture treatments, you might only need a “tune-up” treatment session once a week or every couple of weeks to maintain your health.

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How far do acupuncture needles go in?

Generally the needles are inserted approximately ¼- to ½-inch deep.

What happens if an acupuncture needle hits a nerve?

If a needle hits a small nerve, muscle, or blood vessel, you may feel some pain or a more intense sensation. A single sensation is OK as long as it’s brief. Points on the extremities are more likely to produce stronger reactions in the form of dull aches or tingling sensations.

Does acupuncture make you poop?

According to licensed acupuncturist Dr. Kim Peirano, DACM, LAc, acupressure promotes peristalsis, the movement of your intestinal muscles. This helps move stool through your digestive system. The practice also activates the vagus nerve, which is involved in healthy digestive function.

Can acupuncture damage nerves?

Even a disposable needle can break. Acupuncture needles rarely break 7, but they may damage a spinal nerve root 8 ,9 or a peripheral nerve 10.