What is Acupuncture?

The insertion of sterile acupuncture needles into the skin to promote health.

How does acupuncture work? Or put better – Why does acupuncture work?

There are several theories as to how acupuncture work and a lot of research has gone into trying to explain the mechanisms by which it achieves its beneficial effects – or Why it works!

How it works is via the Electromagnetic interface of the needle – that the needle creates a short circuit between interior and exterior environment – which allows current to flow into or out of the interior space. This is self evident and underpins the process of establishment of balance/equilibrium/homeostasis that is the goal of all health practitioners.

Why it works is that the practitioner chooses the correct positions to place the needles, with the correct type of stimulation, in order to have the specific effect, to target the specific organs, cell lines or physiological process required for that patient.

The qualified acupuncturist will assess the patient's condition by asking detailed questions, observing the skin, tongue and eyes and taking the patients pulse. Together these would give an indication of the underlying issues to be addressed. 

Within Chinese medicine there are 12 organs and one triple warmer, stomach bladder heart and so on. If the organs need stimulating or sedating, this can be achieved by what is called the mother son clock, where the organ corresponds to hours of the day. For example, the heart organ corresponds to 12 noon; 4 am on the clock corresponds to the lung organ.

How many treatments will I need?

This varies with every condition however anywhere between 6 to 8 treatments is the given norm or until a good response is achieved however longer treatments may be needed. Once an improvement is noted then further treatments at intervals of 4 to 8 weeks will be needed to maintain the benefit of treatment. 

Is acupuncture painful?

The insertion of a needle is not normally painful. The needles used are only 0.02mm in diameter, very thin indeed. Once the needles are inserted a mild aching sensation may be felt. There is minimal bruising and skin irritation.

What are acupuncture needles like?

Normally acupuncture needles are very fine, made from surgical steel. They are factory vacuum sterilized before use. The area of skin to be treated is sterilized with alcohol swabs and needles are used once and disposed of.