Traditional Chinese medical specialists explain that our health depends on harmony between extreme life forces called “yin” and “yang”, which form together the energy flow, known as “qi” (pronounce as “chi”). They believe that all illnesses occur as a result of imbalance in Qi, which flows through the pathways (meridians) in human body.
During more than 2000 years Chinese practitioners improve lost energy balance by inserting thin needles into the special acupuncture points, releasing the Qi flow.
For a long time, American specialists were skeptical of this ancient technique.
But nowadays studies show that acupuncture is something more than meridians and energy streams.
Scientists used shams (things that look like acupuncture needles but don’t invade the skin) in order to find out, whether acupuncture is able to relieve pain better than placebo.
A large meta-analysis, conducted in 2012, included 18000 individuals in 23 randomized controlled trials. Results show that acupuncture is really effective for those, who suffer from lower back pain, osteoarthritis and headache.
Scientists say that stimulation of the nerves and muscles could increase blood flow and activate body’s natural pain-reducing substances.
It’s also possible that acupuncture send signals to the brain, impelling secretion of hormones and neurotransmitters.
However there is a lot of secretes about the way, acupuncture functions.
But the fact is that thousands of patients, who live with arthritis, migraine, neck or back pain, get relief after several acupuncture procedures.
The World Health Organization made a list of health conditions, in which acupuncture was recognized to be effective. It involves dysmenorrhea, chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting, sciatica, rheumatoid arthritis, allergic rhinitis and some gastric disorders.
Acupuncture is considered as completely safe practice, if done by professional.
During the procedure, practitioner asks a patient about his or her medical history, examines the body and inserts tiny needles in certain points on different depth. These needles stay in their places up to half an hour.
It’s extremely important that needles should be sterile. Inserting non-sterile things may contribute to infection.
Other possible (but very rare) complications include puncturing internal organs and damaging central nervous system.
That’s why it’s very important to visit professional specialist and give him or her full picture of your state of health. In most states, acupuncturist should have license or certification to practice this technique.
Remember that acupuncture shouldn’t delay your visit to health care specialist.
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