4 Questions to Ask Your Acupuncturist
Acupuncture can help treat a number of conditions such as headaches, addiction, nausea, sinusitis, gastritis, arthritis, depression, anxiety and more. Dr. Gurevich is a board-certified naturopathic physician and acupuncturist and is here to help you on your health and wellness journey. For more information, call us or schedule an appointment online today. We are conveniently located at 2330 NW Flanders Suite #101, Portland, OR 97210.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is an ancient practice that comes from Traditional Chinese medicine. The practitioner inserts thin metallic needles into the patient’s skin, which are then activated by movements the practitioner performs with their hands or through electric stimulation. The Ancient Chinese practitioners believe that the human body is connected by meridians and pathways from over 2000 acupuncture points. A person’s Qi is their energy flow that runs through the body via these pathways and controls the body’s overall health. The idea is that diseases are caused by an interruption to this energy flow and acupuncture applied to certain points will help restore the energy flow. Improving the Qi will in turn improve a person’s overall health.
What is acupuncture and how does it help?
Traditional Chinese medicine believed that inserting hair-thin needles into the skin at acupuncture points throughout the body will restore a body’s energy flow, improving the patient’s overall health. According to Traditional Chinese medicine, there are pathways running through the body from over 2000 acupuncture points. Diseases and ailments are caused by the disruption of these pathways. Acupuncture is used to restore the pathways by stimulating the central nervous system. This causes the body to release chemicals to the brain, spinal cord and muscles, which can kickstart the body’s natural ability to heal.
Acupuncture is not for everyone, and your doctor should be consulted prior to receiving treatment from a certified acupuncturist. As acupuncture is a medical treatment, it is regulated by the FDA who have set standards for manufacturing and sterilization processes for acupuncture needles. The insertion of acupuncture needles should not be painful, but they are inserted into the skin to a point of feeling pressure or an aching feeling at the insertion point. Once inserted, the needles can have a mild electric current sent through them or can be heated to enhance the effectiveness.
What is acupuncture used to treat?
Acupuncture can be used to treat a wide variety of health conditions. It has been shown to be effective either alone or in partnership with conventional medical treatments for conditions such as headaches, addiction, nausea, sinusitis, gastritis, arthritis, depression, anxiety and many, many more. While it was initially used in Western medicine primarily for relief from chronic pain, it’s use has expanded to the treatment of many other areas of the body. It is now thought that acupuncture can help with digestive, neurological, emotional, musculoskeletal, gynecological and respiratory issues. Always consult your physician when considering acupuncture as a form of treatment to help determine if that is the right treatment option for you. While many people have benefited from acupuncture treatment and the FDA has regulated the needles used, the science itself is still not fully understood. Your doctor can go through the potential risks of acupuncture with you, as well as discuss alternative treatment options should acupuncture not be a recommended path. They may also be able to recommend an acupuncture practitioner that they are familiar with.
What should you not do after acupuncture?
After an acupuncture treatment, patients should follow the recommendations of their acupuncture practitioner and listen to their bodies. Acupuncture may leave you feeling energized or relaxed, depending on your treatment. It is recommended that you avoid a strenuous workout such as weightlifting or intense cardio, limit or avoid alcohol or recreational drugs, don’t skip meals, forget to drink water or eat heavy, greasy food and you may want to avoid large crowds or social gatherings if you are highly sensitive. Your body will need time to recover and to get the full effect of your treatment you will need to nourish it, hydrate it and take care of it.