Lower back pain, neck pain or headaches are something we all have suffered from. Sometimes only for a short time, but if it is constant or recurring, acupuncture can help. The efficacy of acupuncture is so great, that other health care practitioners are now learning to dry needle to harness some of the benefits.

Now before you do rush to The Pagoda Tree to get fixed we need to make sure nothing life threatening is going on. If you have had a recent physical trauma or are in an emergency state, please visit a hospital first as acupuncture cannot relieve pain caused by serious structural damage. If they give you the all clear from serious damage, then it’s time to get some acupuncture, and bring with you any scans or test results.

Acupuncture is perfect if the pain is due to inflammation, tissue damage or heightened pain reception. It is natural, quick, cheap, non-invasive and can be longer lasting than many other common treatments for aches and pains. So how does it work?

Improves circulation

When acupuncture needles are inserted the first thing you can feel is often a tingling or a heavy sensation. This is an attraction of your blood and immune system sending more blood to the area, helpful for those recovering from an injury. This extra circulation of blood is important for healing tissue and can also relieve muscle spasms. People who practice dry needling, use this technique alone in the affected muscle tissue, however acupuncturists can also use distal points, which also direct circulation to problem areas.

Releases opioids in the brain

Although much research has gone into how acupuncture stimulates the release of opioids in the brain, scientists still don’t know exactly how. All they do know is the choice of specific acupoints does release opioids. This is of great benefit for pain suffers, as opioids are the naturally occurring chemical in the brain that have an analgesic effect, hence lowering the feeling of pain.

Alters different neurotransmitters and neurohormones

Acupuncture also affects the pituitary gland and hypothalamus, which are both important for the regulation of chemicals in the brain and hormones that cause pain sensation. Those who suffer from fibromyalgia or other problems, where the pain response is stronger than the stimulus, can benefit from the effects of acupuncture.

Starts the flow of endorphins

The first thing most people notice after they finish an acupuncture session is a feeling of calm and clarity. This can be attributed to a lowering of cortisol levels in the blood, but also a raise in endorphins. Endorphins are what give you a natural high and are also the body’s natural painkiller.

Moves stagnation

With acupuncture, we often refer to pain as stagnation. This can be a knot in the muscle, scar tissue or tenderness. Acupuncture primarily works on moving blood and Qi (the body’s life force) along channels, as if we are moving a blockage in a pipe. If you notice a particular area or spot that is having reoccurring pain but can’t quite eliminate it, acupuncture can help.

As The Pagoda Tree is an acupuncture clinic, all the practitioners have training in a wide range of areas. When you come in for a treatment, we will tailor a treatment specifically to you. In the case of aches and pains this can involve using just one needle to give relief. If you are suffering from an issue, don’t hesitate to make contact, as it can often be a simple fix.

– Caleb