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Acupuncture is one of the oldest, most commonly used medical procedures in the world. Acupuncture is a system of healing that has developed over thousands of years as part of the traditional medicine of China, Japan, and other Eastern countries. The earliest records of acupuncture date back over 4,000 years. Today, there are over 3 million practitioners worldwide. Acupuncture is becoming increasingly more accepted and popular in Western medicine as well.

Traditional acupuncture is based on the principle that our health depends on the balanced functioning of the body’s energy, known as Qi (or ch’i). When we are in perfect health, all the energy runs harmoniously throughout our body. When an illness arises, the flow of energy becomes disturbed and this can manifest in a diverse array of symptoms. Using very fine needles, acupuncture aims to correct the flow of energy; and by doing so, symptoms are lessened or eliminated. Anyone who has enjoyed the benefits of exercises like tai chi or qi gong can appreciate the philosophy of energy healing.

Areas of the body that are tender to the touch or discolored may correspond to blocked Qi (energy). These clues help practitioners know which points need to be treated in order to bring the body back into balance.

The term itself (acupuncture) describes a family of procedures involving stimulation of anatomical points on the body by a variety of techniques. American practices of acupuncture incorporate medical traditions from many parts of the world including China, Japan, Korea, and other countries. The acupuncture technique that has been most scientifically studied involves penetrating the skin with thin, solid, metallic needles that are manipulated by the hands or by electrical stimulation.

Acupuncture can be used to treat any ailment in the body, but there are several that are most common. The majority of patients who seek out acupuncture have some kind of pain. Almost all pain can be helped by acupuncture, whether it be back or neck pain, fibromyalgia, headaches and migraines, other musculoskeletal pain, and others. It can also be used to treat conditions such as anxiety and depression, addiction, sleep disturbances, asthma, and allergies, to name a few. Contact me if you have any questions and I can let you know how acupuncture can help.

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