Many of us have a fear of needles, and why not, they look scary and cause pain. Others of us don’t like the idea of trusting someone else to perform treatments on our bodies. As we all have our own fears about things in life, many times we muscle up and get over them. Recently I faced these fears and experienced acupuncture for the first time. I did not go out of spite to validate that I was strong enough to undergo these activities, I did it to make my body much more healthy, naturally. Since I choose to lead a mainly natural lifestyle, I felt that acupuncture could be a great treatment for some aches and pains in my body. When I first began this blog I wrote about pains in my neck and how I chose to see a chiropractor for the first time. Just as in that situation, I was equally, if not more anxious to see how this new experience would be like. As those pains in my neck and life’s stress continue to play a part on my body, I chose acupuncture as a possible remedy.
Some Common Misconceptions
As many people in this world get uncomfortable around needles (myself included), it’s a very good reason why many people choose to never try getting acupuncture. The truth of the matter is that these needles seem less than the thickness of body hair. Acupuncture needles are ridiculously tiny, only 32-gauge, compared to a typical injection needle, which is 14-gauge. Many people also believe that acupuncturists violently try to push these needles into your body, but that is also false. When the needle is inserted (which is barely into your skin), the acupuncturist lightly flicks the top. The best thing is, as the needle enters, you barely feel a thing! The most pain you’ll feel from these is a possible light tickling sensation.
Acupuncture Is Proven To Treat…
- The common cold
- Any sort of body aches and pains
- Sleep problems
- Reproductive problems
- Smoking and other addictions
- And many other conditions that I could list out all day long…
Acupuncture is said to be such a great treatment for almost any conditions because at one time it was used as an anesthesia. If you figure that acupuncture could help remedy pain during a medical procedure such as surgery, I’m pretty dang sure that it could help with any of our other problems.
What Are Some Common Acupuncture Procedures?
The great thing about acupuncture is that there are such a wide range of treatments that are involved. Coming in for my treatment, I thought that it was just going to be pins and needles in my back, and nothing more. Luckily, I was wrong…
- The acupuncture itself: Tiny, disposable, sterile needles placed very gently into specific acupuncture points.
- Acupressure/Tuina: Depending on the injury or condition, a great massage done with a cooling and warming cream. This is to stimulate the natural flow of your Qi and release other tension in your body.
- Tai Chi: Movement exercises that help develop a bodily balance, overall great feeling, and maximum health.
- Cupping: The use of a glass or bamboo cup to create a suction from the body to increase warmth and circulation.
- Moxibustion: A dried leaf called mugwart is burned and placed on the ends of the needles. This helps release tension and aid more circulation from the warmth.
- Herbs and Vitamins: Depending on your condition, a good acupuncturist will view your tongue and be able to tell you what foods, herbs, or vitamins you are insufficient of.
- Qi Gong: Specific breathing methods and movements used to improve health and vitality.
How Does It All Work?
Through the use of these various acupuncture treatment methods, it helps promote the energetic system within us all that maintains health and balance, which is called Qi (pronounced “Chee”). Qi is supposed to provide us with the power to accomplish everyday activities. Qi is vital through our growth, development, maintenance of balance, protection against illnesses, and an overall regulation of our bodies. Acupuncture focuses on certain points on our bodies that correspond with the areas we have pain. These points are called meridians, which is where the Qi flows to the various organs and areas of the body. With the help of acupuncture, Qi is better able to flow through the parts of the body where the Qi is lacking, which are the areas we have pain. With a blockage of Qi, we experience pain and overall discomfort.
I highly recommend seeing an acupuncturist if you experience any of the above conditions, or if you just want to relieve any kind of tension and experience a new thing. You can find acupuncturists all over the place, but I would also suggest to go to a health store and see who they recommend. Much can be remedied without the use of drugs and other artificial treatments, so try acupuncture and see what it could do for you.
Photo credit: lindseyspirit