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  Category: Articles » Health & Fitness » Alternative Medicine » Article

Fundamentals of acupuncture

By Michael Lee

Acupuncture is an important part of Chinese traditional medicine. It has more than two thousand years history and plays an important role on human health in China. In Tang dynasty, it spreads to Japan, Indian and other southeast Asia countries. In the past two decades, acupuncture has grown in popularity in the United States. Millions U.S. adults have ever used it. Now acupuncture is one of the oldest and most commonly used medical procedures in the world.

The term acupuncture involves positioning long, thin needles on various points on the body. There are different techniques to the insertion of the needles, including care for the angles at which they are inserted, different types of needles (there are nine, but most practitioners only use six types of the needles), and various ways to twirl or vibrate the needles. The needles are placed on the body depending upon the ailment of the patient.

Acupuncture has good effect on many diseases, even including some strange diseases. There are two main effects of acupuncture.

The first main effect of acupuncture is pain relief. This is the prominent characteristic of acupuncture and it is often used on all sorts of acute and chronic pain, such as headache, menstrual cramps, tennis elbow, fibromyalgia, myofascial pain, osteoarthritis and back pain. According to the theory of Chinese traditional medicine, health is achieved by maintaining the body in a "balanced state" and pain is caused by disruptions in the energy flow patterns (Qi) in the body. By acupuncture therapy, these imbalances are corrected through puncturing identifiable points and pain is alleviated.

The second main effect of acupuncture is adjustment of organism functions. Treatment scope of acupuncture is very wide because it doesn't treat diseases through medicine, but it adjusts organism functions. It is proposed that acupuncture produces its effects through regulating the nervous system, thus aiding the activity of pain-killing biochemicals such as endorphins and immune system cells at specific sites in the body. In addition, studies have shown that acupuncture may alter brain chemistry by changing the release of neurotransmitters and neurohormones and, thus, affecting the parts of the central nervous system related to sensation and involuntary body functions, such as immune reactions and processes that regulate a person's blood pressure, blood flow, and body temperature. With the adjustment effect of acupuncture, it can be used on many chronic diseases, such as addiction, stroke rehabilitation and asthma.

Acupuncture is safe and side effects are minor, but since acupuncture involves puncturing the skin with needles, the potential does exist for harmful effects to occur, such as accidental puncture of lung that can lead to pneumothorax and bacterial infection from acupuncture needles. a qualified acupuncturist can avoid such side effects.

Health and sense of well being can be maintained with acupuncture, research and thousands of years practice verifies its positive effects. Patients can try it and benefit from this wonderful treatment.

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About the Author
Michale Lee is a healthcare professional. For more health articles, please go to

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