Acupuncture is a traditional healing therapy that has been used in China for about 5,000 years. Very fine needles are inserted into specific points on the body in order to help alleviate certain symptoms or conditions. Its aim is to help restore the patient’s natural balance and to help the body heal itself.
What happens in a session?
The first session lasts about an hour. You will be asked what you're coming for, your symptom in detail and the history of your illness. We will talk about any past treatments you've had, medication or supplements, past medical and some family medical history, as well as other complaints you may have.
Acupuncturists often ask about your current living and working conditions, as well as your menstrual cycle, diet and digestive system, sleeping patterns, emotional health and levels of energy. This is so we can get an overall picture of your life and what may be contributing to your illness, and to see where improvements may be made.
Eve will then feel your pulse on both wrists and look at your tongue. Once a Chinese diagnosis has been made, around 10-15 points are gently needled on both sides of your body, usually in the arms, legs, tummy, back or head.
Does it hurt?
Most people feel nothing more than a dull ache or tingling sensation when the needles are inserted and many people feel nothing at all.
Acupuncture needles come in sterilised packaging and contained in plastic guide tubes - they are disposable and only used once.
Needles are then left in place for around twenty minutes while you relax on a treatment couch. After the treatment many people report a feeling of relaxation and well-being.
A wide variety of conditions
The World Health Organisation lists a wide variety of diseases or disorders for which acupuncture therapy has been tested in controlled clinical trials. These include allergic rhinitis, headache, depression, period pain, many other sorts of pain, induction of labour, rheumatoid arthritis, sciatica and stroke. There are many other conditions where acupuncture has been shown to be effective, but for which further proof is needed: these include female infertility, osteoarthritis, insomnia, recurrent urinary tract infections and whooping cough, to name but a few.
For more information on the WHO recommendations for acupuncture - just click here.
The British Acupuncture Council also has a wide variety of factsheets available for over 40 conditions where acupuncture has been shown to be effective. These include acne, anxiety, bell's palsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, eczema, frozen shoulder, migraine, insomnia, irritable bowel syndrome, sciatica, infertility and premenstrual syndrome.
Just click here to download any of these factsheets on the many ailments acupuncture can help to treat.