Acupuncture forms an important part of Chinese Medicine, having originated in China over 5,000 years ago. However, it is only recently the science and art of Acupuncture has become more widely accepted. It is now an established profession in Australia being used as a natural treatment to assist with a large number of health disorders.
- Assists in the prevention and management of disease
- Is an holistic approach used to manage a variety of illnesses and common ailments
- Aims to treat the cause as well as the symptoms
- Is a popular natural and drug-free form of pain relief
How Does Acupuncture Work?
The aim of acupuncture treatments is to establish a healthier state of body function, increasing the body's capacity to cope with stress. The human body can be likened to a highly complex electrical circuit, and as with any electrical circuit, the energy flow must be kept in good working order to function effectively. If the "human circuit" breaks down, the result may be illness.
In Chinese Medicine it is considered essential for the body's energy (called Qi - pronounced Chi), along with the blood, to circulate in a continuous and unobstructed manner. The pathways through which Qi flows in the body are called meridians which were mapped out by the ancient Chinese thousands of years ago. Modern technological methods such as Kirlian photography, electronic and thermal readings, are now being used to detect these meridians.
There are over 5,000 acupuncture points that lie along these meridians. Acupuncturists aim to improve the quality and quantity of Qi by stimulating acupuncture points with acupuncture needles.
How Can Acupuncture Assist You?
Under national law, claims regarding effectiveness of treatment must be made along with reference to evidence of a high standard with health conditions being listed based on a range of "strong" to "inconclusive" evidence. The Australian Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Association Ltd (AACMA) identified the need for an updated review of evidence for the efficacy of Acupuncture and commissioned The Acupuncture Evidence Project which is a comprehensive analysis of scientific literature focusing on systematic reviews and meta analyses (the highest form of evidence available). For further information we refer you to this comparative literature review. (Please note while there are many other conditions that can also be helped, managed and supported with Acpuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine there is insufficient western scientific evidence for these at the present time.)
How Many Treatments Do You Need?
The number and frequency of treatments depends on several factors. These include the duration and intensity of your present disorder. Your age, constitution, and individual circumstances such as your desired health goal, are also taken into account.
Traditional Chinese Medicine recognises you as a complex blend of body, mind and emotions. During your first visit, your practitioner will be concerned about all aspects of your health. Details of your medical, surgical and family history and other relevant information such as exercise habits and occupation are collected.
What Will Be Your Response to Treatment?
The first response you may notice is a change in your general wellbeing, including sleep, digestion and energy levels. Acupuncture treatments will be aimed towards managing the symptoms of your specific disorders and reducing complications. Individual variations occur, with some people responding more quickly while others showing a more gradual improvement.
Maintenance visits for long-term problems may provide a more comfortable state of health reducing the need for medication and surgical interventions.
What Can You Do to Assist Your Therapy?
Moderation in all things is a good principle. Some things you can do include:
- setting personal health goals
- regular intake of fresh air and water
- enjoyment of nutritious meals
- undertaking regular balanced physical exercise
- taking up an interesting recreational activity
- maintaining a positive mental attitude
- ensuring you get adequate rest and relaxation
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HEALTH CONDITIONS AIDED BY TREATMENT WITH ACUPUNCTURE
Acupuncture can assist in relieving a wide variety of disorders, not limited to but including the following, so we advise you to consult your Acupuncturist for an opinion on any disorder not listed here. This is because while there are many other conditions that can be helped, managed and supported with Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine, there is insufficient western scientific evidence to support these at the present time.
- Allergic Rhinitis (seasonal and perennial)
- Dry Eye
- Irritible Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- High Blood Pressure (hypertension)
- Menopause (including menopausal hot flushes)
EMOTIONAL & PSYCHOLOGICAL
MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN MANAGEMENT
- Low Back Pain (acute and chronic)
- Neck Pain
- Headaches (including tension-type and chronic)
- Migraine (prophylaxis)
- Lateral Elbow Pain (epicondylitis)
- Shoulder Pain
- Knee Osteoarthritis
View Research References Here
Conditions which may be helped with Acupuncture
taken from The Acupuncture Evidence Project
Allergic rhinitis (perennial & seasonal)
Kim SY, Lee H, Chae Y, Park HJ, Lee H. A systematic review of cost-effectiveness analyses alongside randomised controlled trials of acupuncture. Acup Med. 2012 Dec;30(4):273-85.
Feng S, Han V, Fan Y, Yang G, Lao Z, Liao W, et al. Acupuncture for the treatment of allergic rhinitis, a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Rhinol Allergy 2015 Jan-Feb;29 (1):57-62.
Taw MB, Paddy WD, Omole FS, Seidman MD. Acupuncture and allergic rhinitis. Curr Opin Otolaryngo Head Neck Surg. 2015 Jun;23(3):216-20.
Yang L, Yang Z, Yu H, Song H. acupuncture therapy is more effective than artificial tears for dry eye syndrome: evidence based on a meta-analysis. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:143858.
Bazzan AJ, Zabrecky G, Monti DA, Newberg AB. Current evidence regarding the management of mood and anxiety disorders using complementary and alternative medicine. Expert Rev Neurother. 2014 Apr;14(4):411-23.
Goyata SL, Avelino CC, Antos SV, Souza Junior DI, Gurgel MD, Terra FS. Effects from acupuncture in treating anxiety: integrative review. Rev Bres Enferm. 2016 Jun;69(3):602-9.
Spackman E, Richmond S, Sculpher M, Bland M, Brealey S, Gabe R, et al. Cost-effectiveness analysis of acupuncture; counselling and usual care in treating patients with depression; the results of the ACUDep trial. PLOS ONE. 2014,9(11):e113725.
Chan YY, Lo WY, Yang SN, Chen YH, Lin JG. The benefit of combined acupuncture and antidepressant medication for depression: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Affect Disord. 2015 May 1:176:106-17.
Zhao K. Acupuncture for the treatment of insomnia Int Rev Neurobiol. 2013;111:217-34.
Shergis JL, Ni X, Jackson ML, Ahang AL, Guo X, Li Y, et al. A systematic review of acupuncture for sleep quality in people with insomnia. Complement Ther Med. 2016 Jun;26:11-20.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
MacPherson H, Tilbrook H, Agbedjro D, Buckley H, Hewitt C, Frost C. Acupuncture for Irritable bowel Syndrome: 2-year follow-up of a randomised controlled trial. Acupunct Med. 2016 Mar 15.
Menopause including Menopausal hot flushes
***Selva Ovid A, Martinez Zapata M, So a I, Stojanovic Z, Osisma Tuma SM, Bonfill Cusp J, Efficacy and Safety of Needle Acupuncture for Treating Gynaecologic and Obstetric Disorders: An Overview. Med Acupunct. 2013 Dec 1:25(6):386-97.
***Chiu HY, Pan CH, Sinyu YK, Han BC, Tsai PS. Effects of acupuncture on menopause: related symptoms and quality of life in women in natural menopause: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. Menopause. 2015 Feb;22(2):234-44.
Dodin S, Blanchet C, Marc I, Ernst E, Wu T, Vaillancourt C, et al. Acupuncture for menopausal hot flushes. Cochrane Database Sust Rev. 2013(7):Cd0077410.
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
Wang J, Xiong X, Liu W. Acupuncture for essential hypertension. Int J Cardiol. 2013 Nov 20;169(5):317-26.
Zhao XF, Hu HT, Li S, Shang HC, Zhang Hz, Hiu JF, et al. Is Acupuncture Effective for Hypertension? A systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. PLOS ONE. 2015;10(7):e01270919.
Low Back Pain (acute & chronic)
Chou R, Deyo R, Friedly J, Skelly A, Hashimoto R, Weimer M, et al. AHRQ Comparative Effectiveness Reviews. Non-invasive Treatments for Low Back Pain. Rockville (MD).: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2016.
Lam M, Galvin r, Curry P. Effectiveness of acupuncture for nonspecific chronic low back pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2013 Nov 15;38(24):2124-38.
Lee JH, Choi TY, Lee MS, Lee H, Shin BC, Lee H. Acupuncture for acute low back painL a systematic review. Clin J Pain. 2013 Feb;23(2):170-85.
Wellington J. Noninvasive and alternative management of chronic low back pain (efficacy and outcomes). Neuromodulation. 2014 Oct;17 Suppl 2:24-30.
Liu L, Skinner M, McDonough S, Maire L, Baxter GD. Acupuncture for low back pain: an overview of systematic reviews. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:328196.
Ji M, Wang X, Chen M, Shen Y, Zhang X, Yang J. The Efficacy o Acupuncture for the Treatment of Sciatica: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:192808.
Lewis RA, Williams NH, Sutton AJ, Burton K, Din NU, Matar HE et al. Comparative clinical effectiveness of management strategies for sciatica: systematic review and network meta-analyses. Spine J. 2015 Jun 1;15(6):1461-77.
Qin Z, Liu X, Wu J, Zhai Y, Liu Z. Effectiveness of Acupuncture for Treating Sciatica: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:425108.
Ji M, Wang X, Chen M, Shen Y, Zhang X, Yang J. The Efficacy of Acupuncture for the Treatment of Sciatica: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Evid Based Compolement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:192808.
Van der Velde G, Yu H, Paulden M, Cote P, Varatharajan S, Shearer HM, et al. Which interventions are cost-effective for the management of whiplash=associated and neck pain-associated diosrders? A systematic review of the health economic literature by the Ontario Protocol for Traffic Injury Management (OPTIMa) Collaboration. Spine J. 2015 Nov 26.Trinh K, Graham N, Irnich D, Cameron ID, Forget M. Acupuncture for neck disorders. Cochrane Database Sys Rev. 2016(5):Cd004870.
Headache (tension-type and chronic)
Coeytaux RR, Befus D. Role of Acupuncture in the Treatment or Prevention of Migraine Tension-Type Headache, or Chronic Headache Disorders. Headache. 2016 Jul;56(7):1238-40.
Lardon A, Girard MP, Zaim C, Lemeunier N. Descarreaux M, Marchand AA. Effectieness of preventive and treatment interventions or primary headaches in the workplace: A systematic review of the literature. Cephalalgia. 2016 Mar 2.
Da Silva AN. Acupuncture for migraine prevention. Headache. 2015 Mar;55(3):470-3.
*** Linde K, Alia’s G, Brinkhaus B, Fel Y Mahring M, Vertesick E, Vartosick BM, et al. Acupuncture for the prevention of episodic migraine. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016 Cd007587.
Da Silva AN. Acupuncture for migraine prevention. Headache. 2015 Mar;55(3):470-3.
Yang Y, Que Q, Ye X, Zheng G. Verum versus sham manual acupuncture for migraine: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials. Acupunct Med. 2016 Apr;34(2):76-83.
*** Dong W, Goost H, Oln XB, Burger C, Paui C, Wang ZI, et al. Treatments for shoulder impingement syndrome: a PRISMA systematic review and network meta-analysis. Med’cina (Baltimore). 2013 Mar;94(10):e510.
Lateral elbow pain (epicondylitis)
Gadau M, Yeung WF, Liu H, Zaslawski C, Tan YS, Wang FC, etal. Acupuncture and moxibustion for lateral elbow pain: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2014;14:136.
Tang H, Fan H, Chen J, Yang M, Yi X, Dai G et al. Acupuncture for Lateral Epicondylitis: A Systematic Review Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:861849.
Corbett MS, Rice SI, Madurasinghe V, Slack R, Fayter DA, Harden M, etal. Acupuncture and other physical treatments for the relief of pain due to osteoarthritis of the knee: network meta-analysis. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2013 Sep;21(9):1290-8.
***Manyanga T, Ropesa M, Zarychanso R, Abou-Setta A, Frieren C, Tennanhouse M, et al. Pain management with acupuncture in osteoarthritis: a systematic review and meta analysis. AMC Complement Altern Med. 2014;14:312.
Treatment modalities may include:
Herbal medicine is an integral part of Chinese Medicine. The majority of Chinese herbal medicine is sourced from organic plant substances and certain minerals. Herbal formulae rarely elicit side effects, and have been used safely for centuries across large populations. These formulations, when prescribed by a well-trained practitioner, can be used by adults, children, and the elderly.
Acupuncture is a natural and gentle treatment that involves the insertion of fine needles in specific points along the body that either directly relate to or influence the disorder that your acupuncturist is seeking to balance. It also promotes general health and prevents or limits the progression of certain diseases. The combination of Chinese herbs and Acupuncture may be the preferred treatment protocol for certain ailments.
This is a technique in which local suction is created on the skin to allow toxins and stagnant blood flow to rise to the surface. Clearing stagnations is considered to stimulate the tissues to heal, facilitating restoration of proper function. Cupping is generally employed to address symptoms of respiratory diseases (eg asthma, the common cold, pneumonia and bronchitis) as well as gynaecological disorders and pain conditions.
A form of thermal treatment that some Acupuncturists use to address, among other things, the symptoms of chronic musculoskeletal conditions, head colds and flu. The method often involves placing a small amount of mugwort herb in the centre of a disc that sits on the body. The practitioner then lights the herb, the warming effect of which penetrates the protective disc, gently warming the selected acupuncture points.
Also known as auricular therapy, it is based on the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine and is regularly incorporated into an acupuncture treatment. Ear Acupuncture is widely used in the management of addictions, mood disturbances, obesity and pain.
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