Acupuncture is one of the oldest traditions of Chinese medicine and is a form which is used throughout the world today, acupuncture originated in China more than 2,000 years ago also making it one of the oldest forms of medicine in the world.

The term acupuncture describes procedures involving the stimulation of anatomical points on the body by a variety of techniques. The techniques involve the insertion of thin metallic needles just under the surface of the skin and these needles are then manipulated either by hand or by electrical impulse.

What does acupuncture feel like?

The needles are hair thin and everyone will feel the effects of acupuncture differently, however when the needles are inserted no pain or very little pain will be felt. Some people say that they feel incredibly energised after the treatment while others feel relaxed and are almost sleepy with only very few patients saying that they have felt any pain or discomfort during the procedure. Providing you have treatment from a reliable and trained practitioner, acupuncture is generally considered a safe form of Chinese medicine.

Does acupuncture actually work?

Studies have been numerous on the benefits of acupuncture and its potential usefulness, from these studies many promising results have emerged, studies on people recovering from operations and those suffering the effects of chemotherapy showed great improvements when they took part in the studies. Great improvements were also seen in those recovering from addictions, strokes, carpel tunnel syndrome and those suffering asthma.

How widely used is acupuncture?

Acupuncture has gained in popularity tremendously over the last decade and is now recognised and used in many clinics and sports facilities as an alternative form of medication. Physicians and dentists are now training in the art of acupuncture, as it is a well-known alternative form of pain relief, hundreds of clinics specialising in acupuncture and are worldwide and it is estimated that there are over 12 million people worldwide that have used or are using acupuncture on a regular basis.

How does acupuncture work?

It is one of the most widely known and used aspects of Chinese medicine and is based on balancing the opposites yin and yang, it is when the body or the yin and yang becomes unbalanced that ill health occurs. Vital energy which is known as the Qi flows along what are know as the meridian channels and acupuncture is thought to be an excellent way of opening up the meridian channels and allowing free movement of the Qi throughout the body.

It is thought that there are roughly 12 main meridian channels and 8 secondary channels, with more than 2,000 acupuncture points on the body which connect the channels. It is these points which are used in acupuncture treatment by insertion of the needles at specific points relating to the illness or pain within the body.