The practice of acupuncture is based on the theory of meridians. According to this theory, Qi (vital energy) and blood circulation in the body through a system of channels called meridians, connecting internal organs with external organs or tissues. By stimulating certain points of the body surface reached by meridians through needling, the flow of Qi and blood can be regulated and diseases are thus treated. These stimulated points are called acupoints or acupuncture points
Acupoints reside along more than a dozen of major meridians. There are 12 pairs of regular meridians that are systematically distributed over both sides of the body, and two major extra meridians running along the midlines of the abdomen and back. Along these meridians more than three hundred acupoints are identified, each having its own therapeutic action.
In acupuncture clinics, the practitioner first selects appropriate acupoints along different meridians based on identified health problems. Then very fine and thin sterilized and disposable needles are inserted into these acupoints. The needles are made of stainless steel and vary in length from half an inch to 3 inches. The choice of needle is usually determined by the location of the acupoint and the effects being sought. If the point is correctly located and the required depth reached, the patient will usually experience a feeling of soreness, heaviness, numbness and distention. The manipulator will simultaneously feel that the needle is tightened.
The needles are usually left in acupoints for 15-30 minutes. During the treatment the needles may be manipulated to achieve the effect of the Qi. Needle manipulations are generally involved with lifting, thrusting, twisting and rotating, according to treatment specifications for the health problem. Needling may also be activated by electrical stimulation, a procedure usually called electro-acupuncture, in which manipulations are attained through varying frequencies and voltages
Treatment frequency and duration are a matter of professional judgment of the practitioner, in the first consultation with the patient. A common course of treatment may initially involve between 5 to 15 treatments spaced at approximately every week intervals, and spread out to two weeks or monthly later in a program. It depends on therapeutic outcome
Our practitioner will always remind the patient of the possibility of exacerbation at the start of a course of treatment. The patients may find that in the short term after treatment, the symptoms may in fact get worse before an improvement sets in.
This is a quite common feature of acupuncture treatment. In many cases an improvement will be noticed with in 2-3 treatments. However, the length of treatment will depend on the problem, your age and other medical factors.
Therefore we sometimes see the treatment as slow and in some cases of marginal benefit. With the gradual establishment of
acupuncture as the treatment of choice for many people, the effectiveness of the approach with acute as well as with more chronic conditions is being recognized