Tell Me More - What Can Acupuncture Treat?

For many, acupuncture treatment is still considered an alternative option with no real science behind it. The fact is that acupuncture has been around for over 3000 years and has proven effective for a wide range of ailments. So, what exactly is it, and what can acupuncture treat?

Acupuncture Unpacked

The process of acupuncture generally involves the use of fine, sterile needles which are inserted into the body at very specific points. The Eastern philosophy refers to the “Qi”, or energy pathways within the body and works to balance the body’s energy.

Modern day science has a slightly different take but makes acupuncture no less effective.

According to UC San Diego School of Medicine, “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. Pressure, heat, or electrical stimulation may further enhance the effects. Other acupoint stimulation techniques include manual massage, moxibustion or heat therapy, cupping, and the application of topical herbal medicines and liniments.”

The fact remains, however, that medicine can’t put their finger on exactly why acupuncture works. However, neuroscience experts point to acupuncture points being a coalescence of nerves, muscle and connective tissue which, when stimulated, allows for increased blood flow and the release of the natural pain killers within the body.

What Can Acupuncture Treat?

An article in Medical News Today lists a number of ailments which have been relieved by the use of acupuncture. These include:

  • low back pain

  • neck pain

  • osteoarthritis

  • knee pain

  • headache and migraine

  • high and low blood pressure

  • chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting

  • some gastric conditions, including peptic ulcer

  • painful periods

  • dysentery

  • allergic rhinitis

  • facial pain

  • morning sickness

  • rheumatoid arthritis

  • sprains

and many more.

Acupuncture is a safe treatment option with very few side effects and can be used alongside other medicines. If you have more questions around what acupuncture can treat, please feel free to book an appointment with Dr Sanua – a medical practitioner in Johannesburg who works with your body for the best treatment options.


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