Acupuncture..in a nutshell.
Acupuncture is a safe, natural, drug-free, and effective way to relieve symptoms and signs of many health problems.
Over the past 2, 000 plus years acupuncture has evolved into a complete healing system whose goal is to activate the natural, self-healing abilities of the body. It can also strengthen and support the body to prevent future illness and disease.
An acupuncturist inserts very fine (they are also sterile one time use) needles into specific points along the body. These points are found along meridians that travel up the body carrying our Qi (chee). Meridians are like rivers inside the body. Wherever a river flows it brings nourishment and sustenance to its destination and along the way via the water it carries. Likewise, meridians bring nourishment to our body via the flow of Qi. Qi is a combination of energies generated by the food we eat, the air we breathe, and the constitution we inherit from our parents. It is the vital energy in all living things.
Your acupuncturist's goal when they insert a needle is to assist your body in maintaining health and harmony. Health is achieved when the body is able to administer the proper quantity, quality, and movement of qi in response to a stimulus. When the body fails to maintain homeostasis (constant internal balance) for a prolonged time disease develops. If the qi is balanced and flowing freely you will exhibit an inner resiliency that allows you to meet the demands of life. You will thrive when faced with environmental, physical, emotional, and mental stress.
It is your acupuncturist's job to develop keen diagnostic skills in order to effectively evaluate the quality, quantity, and balance of Qi flowing within your body. Diagnosis may involve four main techniques:
- Pulse diagnosis- at every visit your acupuncturist will feel your pulse. They are looking for over 26 subtle variations in the quality of your pulse and are felt at six different positions on each wrist.
- Looking- your appearance, demeanor, tone of voice, and what your tongue looks like provide clues about your internal health.
- Asking- information is gathered by asking questions about past medical history, present health, lifestyle, and emotional state. Some of these questions will be new to you.
- Physical examination- palpation of specific areas can reveal imbalances.