How does Acupuncture work?

Acupuncture is the practice of inserting very thin needles into specific points on the body and can be used in the treatment of a wide range of conditions (see below).

Acupuncture has been shown to directly affect every physiology system in the body. By increasing circulation and regulating the nervous system Acupuncture can improve the body’s own natural healing response.

It aims to treat the root cause of the problem and address it within the context of the whole body, restoring the body to a state of internal balance and homeostasis.

More than ever people are feeling out of sync with their body and their environment, stressed, overworked and run down.

The majority of patients report feeling extremely relaxed during and after treatments and leave feeling energised, rejuvenated and stress free.

For more information, please see our article; ‘How does Acupuncture work?‘ in the articles section.


What can Acupuncture help with?

There is an increasing amount of research on the safe use of Acupuncture treatment. The research on the effectiveness of Acupuncture naturally differs according to each specific condition. The list bellow shows conditions we commonly see in our Clinics.

Acupuncture is recognised as a safe and effective treatment for many disorders, and demonstrates some therapeutic benefits for other conditions.

For more information on the most up to date research for specific your condition please see the British Acupuncture Council Research Page and the Evidence Based Acupuncture Research Page. To find out if we can help you or for more information please feel free to get in touch.

  • Musculo-skeletal Pain;
    • Back Pain
    • Neck Pain
    • Sciatica
    • Knee Pain
    • Sports Injuries
  • Anxiety and Stress
  • Bell’s Palsy
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Diabetes Type 2
  • Digestive Disorders such as IBS
  • Breathing and Respiratory disorders such as Asthma and congested Sinuses
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches and Migrains
  • Head Injury
  • High and Low Blood Pressure
  • Infertility
  • Insomnia
  • General Pain Management
  • Gynecological issues such as Painful Menstruation, PMT and Endometriosis
  • Menopausal Symptoms
  • Neuralgia and Nerve disorders
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Recurrent Urinary-tract Infections

The Mind, Emotions and The Nervous System

An example of facial Acupuncture points which can be used to treat conditions such as facial paralysis, migraines and congested sinuses

An example of facial Acupuncture points which can be used to treat conditions such as facial paralysis, migraines and congested sinuses

Acupuncture has been shown to have an effect on relaxing and balancing the Nervous System. It is commonly used in the treatment of psycho-emotional conditions such as stress, anxiety and depression.

It is common to find ourselves stuck in a default level of stress, the ‘fight or flight’ or ‘sympathetic’ nervous system state. Acupuncture aims to calm the nervous system and increase ‘parasympathetic’ or rest response action. This is crucial both for the reduction of stress, and also for the body’s natural healing process.

Treatments can also be seen to have a more subtle energetic effect of re-balancing the body’s Qi which the Chinese believed was ultimately the more fundamental aspect of our body and ourselves.

The traditional Chinese healing arts reflect a holistic understanding of the human being; considering the relationship between the mind, body and our environment. For more information, please see our article; ‘How does Acupuncture work?‘ in the articles section.

Japanese ‘Kiko Style’ Acupuncture

An Acupuncture chart from the Qing dynasty

An Acupuncture chart from the Qing dynasty

Nick practices a Japanese style of Acupuncture as taught by renowned practitioner Kiko Matsumoto. A core feature of the Kiko style is addressing the root cause of illness and treating the first or older ‘unhealed’ injuries prior to treating the main complaint. The logic follows that if the body is still trying to heal or address an old injury it does not have the capacity to deal with the new one.

For example, it is very common to see a long term physical or sports injury not healing, or healing slowly. Often it is the Immune system (which is responsible for healing all injuries and wounds) which needs addressing first before specifically addressing the physical issues.

As with all Japanese Styles the needling is often very gentle and we use very thin needles for practice with the shallow insertion. This tends to create a more pleasant experience for the patient. Emphasis is placed on regulating the nervous system and creating a relaxing environment for the patient to begin the healing process.


Acupuncture for Healthcare

You do not have to have a specific injury or complaint to receive Acupuncture.

It is a comprehensive system of healthcare and preventative medicine in it’s own right. Many people come for regular maintenance treatments to help keep themselves in good health.

Acupuncture can have numerous health benefits including strengthening the immune system, regulating the nervous system, maintaining proper organ function, increasing circulation and energy levels, nourishing the tissues and invigorating the mind and body.

A weekly or monthly session of Acupuncture and Massage is one of the most effective ways of preventing the onset of illness. It also leaves you feeling stress free and rejuvenated.


Is Acupuncture Safe?

Several large-scale studies have been conducted on the safety of Acupuncture. Considering all the possible risks of the treatment the studies repeatably demonstrate that Acupuncture is a safe therapy and serious adverse reactions are extremely rare.


History of Acupuncture


A painting of three famous Daoist Sages; Huang Di (The Yellow Emperor), Fu Xi and Shen Nong

The use of stone needles can be dated back to the end of the Stone Age period. These techniques developed throughout Chinese history where today we use pre-sterilized stainless steel needles to perform Acupuncture.

Acupuncture, along with Herbs, Massage and Qi Gong, has been one of the key pillars of medicine in China for thousands of years and continues to posses that status in modern Chinese hospitals today.

For more information on the ‘History of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine‘ please click here and feel free to browse our free articles.

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