How Acupuncture Can Help With Pain Management
April 8, 2020
Sure, our bodies get older and we struggle with stiff joints and muscles; we overstrain our bodies at work, whether it’s sitting in a chair all day or lifting heavy items, but there are ways to relieve pain and for patients to regain their quality of life. And if you’re thinking that pain relief has to come in the form of prescription medications or surgeries, then guess again!
There are a variety of alternative medicines that can provide the same pain relief as traditional medicine, including acupuncture. At Acupuncture Works, we have a team of talented and knowledgeable practitioners who offer caring and compassionate service to residents of Pawleys Island and the areas around Myrtle Beach. The owner of Acupuncture Works, Leslie Jafarace, has been practicing acupuncture since 2002 and is dedicated to providing her clients with the very best service and care.
What is Acupuncture?
In traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is the practice of bringing balance to the life force, or “qi,” pronounced “chee.” Practitioners of Chinese medicine believe that our health is determined by a balance of extremes, the “yin” and “yang.” When there is an unbalance, it can lead to illness and disease.
Qi, or energy, is believed to flow through our body in certain pathways, or meridians, which are accessible by very thin needles through more than 400 acupuncture points all over the body. By accessing the right combination of points, it helps open the flow of energy through the body, helping relieve illness, including pain. These points also align with nerves, muscles, and connective tissue, which are stimulated and help to promote blood flow.
What Conditions Can Acupuncture Help?
Because there are acupuncture points all over the body, the alternative medicine can help relieve a variety of bodily pains.
- Low Back Pain: By stimulating a variety of points, including on the lower back, the abdomen, hip bone, and back of the knees, acupuncture can help relieve low back pain.
- Sciatica: A nerve that travels from the low back and down into the feet, the sciatic nerve can cause a significant amount of pain and can be treated with just a few sessions of acupuncture.
- Neck Pain: If you’re struggling with pain or stiffness in the neck, an acupuncture point in the outer ankle bone can offer relief.
- Osteoarthritis: Acupuncture may provide anti-inflammatory effects, helping relieve pain from arthritis in the knees.
- Headaches: Several studies have shown that acupuncture can be effective in providing relief from headaches, migraines, and tension headaches.
How Often Should You Schedule Acupuncture Appointments?
Every body is unique and each illness or condition may be affected differently, so there isn’t a clear recommendation for how often to visit an acupuncturist, but it will depend on what health issue you are struggling with and how severe the pain is.
When you first visit an acupuncturist, you will go over the specifics of your health issue and the practitioner will recommend a treatment plan. In many cases, it’s recommended that sessions start out more frequently, between one and three sessions per week, and then treatments can gradually taper out as pain subsides and symptoms lessen. At that point, a patient may only need intermittent care in order to maintain a balance of energy in the body.
The benefits of acupuncture are cumulative, meaning that positive effects of each treatment build on top of each other. If you are struggling with acute pain from a recent injury or a flare-up of a chronic condition, you may want to be slightly more aggressive with treatment to see the greatest improvement right from the start. It’s also important to keep in mind that healing and finding balance in your body takes time. Experiencing benefits from acupuncture is rarely achieved through just one or two sessions.
In addition, if you do begin to see improvements after a week to a month of sessions, it’s important to continue seeking treatment in order to maintain the positive effects. If your body goes without treatment for too long, but hasn’t yet fully regained balance, your body may revert back to its previous condition. Scheduling regular sessions will allow your body to continually reap the benefits.
It may help to think of acupuncture as a means of preventing symptoms or pain from developing, especially after the initial healing has taken place. So, as your treatments progress and you can begin to feel relief from pain, pay close attention to how your body feels and schedule appointments as necessary. Some patients like to schedule their appointments once every month, some every six weeks, and others may only need a treatment every three months. The important thing is to find what works for you and your body.
Managing Pain With Acupuncture
If you’re struggling with pain, whether it’s from an injury or if you’re suffering from chronic pain, acupuncture has been proven to have significant health benefits. With acupuncture, when you first begin treatments to when you find a consistency of sessions that works for you, it can be used as a way of managing pain that develops throughout your lifetime. Because acupuncture provides healing for a variety of ailments, it’s a wonderful way of providing alternative healing and relief.
Located in Pawleys Island and serving the surrounding area of Myrtle Beach, we are passionate about helping patients find relief from their symptoms. We strive to ensure that everyone can live a high-quality life that is free of pain that can be achieved through natural, alternative healing. Schedule your session with us today!