Most of us know that acupuncture is practised by the use of tiny needles put in your body, but what is the purpose of these needles and how is it possible that a bunch of needles can be of any assistance relieving me from my headache? Well it has everything to do with energy and blood flow.
Just as we have blood vessels in our bodies which have to be provided with a good strong blood flow in order to do their job right, we also have meridians in our body which provide the path for energy or “chi” to flow through our body.
Just as a clogged blood vessel can be a problem for your health, so a blockage in your meridians can cause health issues. This keeps the energy from having its natural flow and therefore the energy doesn’t end up at the place in your body where it is supposed to be.
It is very helpful to consider “energy” as “information” and the meridian system like the World Wide Web. If information is blocked, some functions are unable to be carried out. Imagine if your bank was off-line, what would the flow-on effects be? This is like an energy blockage, it can cause many flow-on effects too.
By using acupuncture and stimulating the meridians, a blockage can be removed and the energy can flow again and your complaints are resolved. Since there are more than 1000 acupuncture points on the human body, of course this requires some specialization and our friends from China have studied this type of alternative medicine for thousands of years.
You can say they are very specialized and luckily they have shared their information giving the Western population of the world the chance to benefit from this type of alternative medical treatments.
There are a lot of theories on how acupuncture actually works. Some of them are:
- Acupuncture has the release of pain-relieving endorphins stimulated
- Acupuncture has the release of neurotransmitters stimulated
- Acupuncture has a stimulating effect on circulation
- Acupuncture has an influence on the body’s electrical currents
Probably it is a combination of all these theories (plus more that haven't been thought of yet) that gets the job done.
There are a lot of conditions and health issues that can be treated with acupuncture. The accent on the treatments which are generally accepted in the Western culture lies on pain relief treatments. Acupuncture is being used a lot for headaches, migraines, lower back pains, tennis elbows and other pain problems which are coming from muscle tension. By stimulating the energy in these muscle groups the problem is being resolved.
Conditions where acupuncture is not generally accepted yet are for instance addictions. There are currently treatments available which claim to help you to deal with your addiction. Whether it is a nasty drug habit, food addiction, alcoholism or smoking, it seems that acupuncture may or may not be of some assistance.
There have been some successful long-term intensive programs for addictions such as the NADA protocol. This is something that is being researched and it would be a real breakthrough if drug addicts, alcohol addicts, smokers and obese people can be helped this way.