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Acupuncture: How It Works, Uses, Benefits, and Risks

Acupuncture

Acupuncture, a therapy that is executed on the patient with specific health issues and it helps them in getting rid of the condition up to some extent, In this article, we are going to tell you about Acupuncture, how it works, its uses, benefits and risks.

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one of the oldest medicine approaches, originated from China around 100BC is used for pain relief technique.

An acupuncturist inserts wafer-thin needles to the exact acupuncture points of your body to restore the flow so that you will overcome the pain. It stimulates the healing process and provides relaxation. There are more than 1000 acupuncture points on the body, and each of them is associated with different organs and body parts.

How does Acupuncture work?

Researchers can’t explain how exactly acupuncture works, but there are many theories about it. Some theories say acupuncture processes release natural pain relieving hormone Endorphins. Acupuncture also promotes the autonomic nervous system and releases some chemicals that can reduce inflammation and regulate blood flow and pressure.

Uses

Acupuncture has a wide use for various diseases and researches say that acupuncture can be useful in numerous health problems like:

  • Nausea
  • Migraines
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Sinus problems
  • Depression
  • Arthritis
  • Headache, back pain and neck pain

Even the World Health Organisation (WHO) has stated that acupuncture is beneficial in some of the conditions like:

  • Morning sickness
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Some gastric conditions
  • Period cramps
  • Sciatica
  • Sprains and tennis elbow
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

WHO has also said that there are some conditions like fibromyalgia, post-operative convalescence, spine pain and neck stiffness, whooping cough, or pertussis can be cured with the help of acupuncture, but there is some strong evidence needed. Some even say acupuncture promotes fertility and helps in quit smoking or other addiction.

Health Benefits of acupuncture

Acupuncture has several health benefits. Below are some of the significant benefits for health:

  • Helps in headache relief and Migraine:

Studies say that exact and careful placement of acupuncture needles near particular nerves can help in reducing headache and relaxes your body.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews says that acupuncture is effective when added to the migraine treatment. In 2016 a review was published where scientists assessed 22 published trials including 4985 participants, they found that acupuncture treatment can reduce migraine symptoms up to certain limits.

  • Acupuncture for low back pain: 

Are you suffering from low back pain? Acupuncture can help you in getting rid of it.

Annals of Internal Medicine reports say that acupuncture can lessen the low back pain and create better function immediately once executed compared to no acupuncture. However, in the long term, the differences were not that clear.

  • Acupuncture for knee pain: 

If you are suffering from knee pain, then try acupuncture to get relief from it. As per an analysis, acupuncture improves long or short term physical function. People with chronic knee pain (osteoarthritis) can get short term relief (up to 13 weeks only).

  • Improvement in quality sleep

Melatonin hormone regulates our sleep quality. But our modern lifestyle has produced poor sleep habits. Acupuncture can increase melatonin hormone in your body and helps you restore natural ability to sleep.

  • Control of Blood pressure

Acupuncture is an effective treatment for maintaining blood pressure level. When practised regularly, it can beat any other medicines and lowers your blood pressure and improves the cardiovascular system.

  • Enhances Immune system

Acupuncture boosts your immune system and strengthens our antibodies to fight with the harmful organisms and infections. It speeds up the healing process too.

  • Enhances Fertility 

Acupuncture is not only beneficial for specific health problems, but also it enhances the female reproductive system. With this ancient medical treatment, one can achieve a healthy pregnancy and less problematic delivery.

Risks

As every therapy has a risk factor, so does acupuncture has some risks as below:

  • The most common thing is you feel and bleed due to the needle insertion.
  • If the needles are not sterilised, then chances are high you may get infected.
  • Some may get skin rashes or allergic reactions.
  • Nausea, dizziness and fainting are some of the other risks.
  • If a patient has a bleeding disorder or takes blood thinners, then it may be dangerous to try acupuncture therapy

 Final words

Acupuncture, the ancient medical treatment option is fruitful in many cases. But, it is always advisable to check with your doctor to know whether the therapy is suitable for you. If you are having any health issues, then it may help you get rid of the pain associated with it.

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