Acupuncture has been practiced in China for over 2000 years, resulting in a wealth of empirical experience. Interest in the technique grew tremendously in the West over the latter half of the 20th Century, and to an even greater degree in the last 10 years.
The growth in medical acupuncture took place as a result of its perceived efficacy in acute and chronic pain, as well as in functional and reversible organic disorders, and addiction and as a result of considerable recent research.
Auricular Medicine was developed in France by award-winning physician, Paul Nogier, M.D. He was a conventionally-trained neurologist, but he also had an engineering background, which ultimately became useful in his medical research. Dr. Nogier studied abroad in the disciplines of Chinese medicine, acupuncture, homeopathic, and manual spinal correction.
His research revealed that the outer ear—known as the auricle, is energetically connected to the entire body: a “micro-system.” This meansthe ear functions as a tiny microcosm of living energy—a comprehensive acupuncture system the correlates and connects to the entire body. Dr. Nogier discovered that the electrical conductivity of the skin of the ear changes in very specific areas when there is a disturbance in the body. He found those disturbances as detectable acupuncture points that are otherwise not present.
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture improves the body’s functions and promotes the natural self-healing process by stimulating specific anatomic sites–commonly referred to as acupuncture points, or acupoints. The most common method used to stimulate acupoints is the insertion of fine, sterile needles into the skin.
Traditional Chinese Medicine is based on an ancient philosophy that describes the universe, and the body, in terms of two opposing forces: yin and yang. When these forces are in balance, the body is healthy. Energy, called “qi” (pronounced “chee”) flows along specific pathways, called meridians, throughout the body. This constant flow of energy keeps the yin and yang forces balanced. Modern research has demonstrated acupuncture’s effects on the nervous system, endocrine and immune systems, cardiovascular system, and digestive system. By stimulating the body’s various systems, acupuncture can help to resolve pain, and improve sleep, digestive function, and sense of well-being.
What happens during an acupuncture treatment?
First, your acupuncturist will ask about your health history. Then, he or she will examine your tongue’s shape, color, and coating, feel your pulse, and possibly perform some additional physical examinations depending on your individual health needs. Using these unique assessment tools, the acupuncturist will be able to recommend a proper treatment plan to address your particular condition. To begin the acupuncture treatment, you lay comfortably on a treatment table while precise acupoints are stimulated on various areas of your body. Most people feel no or minimal discomfort as the fine needles are gently placed. The needles are usually retained between five and 30 minutes. During and after treatments, people report that they feel very relaxed.
How many treatments will I need?
The frequency and number of treatments differ from person to person. Some people experience dramatic relief in the first treatment. For complex or long-standing chronic conditions, one to two treatments per week for several months may be recommended. For acute problems, usually fewer visits are required, usually eight to ten visits in total. An individualized treatment plan that includes the expected number of treatments will be discussed during your initial visit.
Diseases, symptoms and conditions I treat with acupuncture
Migraine, headache, neck pain, stiff neck, low back pain, sciatica, fibromyalgia and fasciitis, neuralgia post-herpetic, spine pain, facial pain, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, meniere’s disease.
Acupuncture is also successful on following:
Depression, dysmenorrhoea, premenstrual syndrome, polycystic ovary syndrome (stein-leventhal syndrome), nausea and vomiting, tietze syndrome, knee pain, periarthritis of shoulder, rheumatoid arthritis, sprain, tennis elbow, osteoarthritis, insomnia, obesity, opioid dependence, tobacco dependence…