The Chinese began using acupuncture over 3,000 years ago, and it remains used as a healing technique to this day.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, the opposing forces of ‘yin’ and ‘yang’ represent the universe and the body. When your energy, known as “qi” (chee), is flowing smoothly throughout your body, the two forces are balanced, resulting in a healthy body. However, when there is a disruption in this flow, the practice says, you experience pain and illness. This is where acupuncture can get your qi back on track!
The U.S. National Institutes of Health prominently brought acupuncture’s successes into the public eye in 1997. According to San Diego’s Center for Integrative Medicine, the stimulation of certain anatomic sites (acupuncture points) put your body’s self-healing process into motion. This stimulation is achieved through many methods, including inserting tiny needles into your skin, heat, pressure, cupping and manual massage, to name a few. Research has also highlighted acupuncture’s positive effects on various systems — nervous, cardiovascular, immune, endocrine and digestive.
So, what actually takes place during an acupuncture session?
Firstly, your acupuncturist will perform a physical examination as well as inquire about your health history. Based on your assessment and unique needs, your acupuncturist will decide on the best treatment. For that process, various acupoints on your body will be stimulated (through the methods mentioned above) for up to 30 minutes, as you lay on the table. For those of you who run at the thought of needles — don’t worry! Most people feel no pain at all during treatment.