Acupuncture, the unique aspect of TCM, involves the insertion of fine, sterile needles in various combinations and patterns, which facilitate the flow of Qi (energy) within the body. Each specific organ and region in the body are paired with a meridian of energy. Acu–points along the meridian can be used to influence the health of the corresponding organ or region. To strengthen a weak organ, energy is added to the selected meridian point(s) with acupressure, acupuncture, electro–acupuncture, moxa (heat), or magnets. Acupuncture is most effective for channeling excess energy (ions, electrons) out of the body; therefore, conditions such as pain, tension, stress, and anxiety are treated exceptionally well. For the scientific–minded, research has shown that acupuncture boosts these pain relieving and mood elevating chemicals: endorphins, serotonin, and GABA. Acupuncture also regulates cortisol (stress hormone) and immune activity.
WHAT IS AN ACUPUNCTURE TREATMENT LIKE?
Acupuncture is surprisingly painless and deeply relaxing. Certain acupuncture points or regions may experience a dull, achy, "Qi" sensation. Any sharp or painful sensations are rare and momentary. After the needles are placed, patients begin to relax into a deep and often meditative state. Acupuncture treatments begin with a brief consultation and generally last 45–60 minutes. Beneficial results are most often experienced within 12–24 hours and last for 2–3 days, sometimes longer. Acute and severe conditions should be treated 2–3 times per week. Chronic conditions and maintenance treatments are done less frequently. Treatments may include the use of traditional bodywork techniques (acupressure, tui–na, shiatsu), heat/moxa, cupping, needles, tacks, magnets, electro–acupuncture, or qi gong. Acupuncture treatment may include the use of traditional bodywork techniques (acupressure, tui-na, shiatsu), heat/moxa, cupping, needles, tacks, magnets, electro–acupuncture, or qi gong.