I often use acupuncture for releasing muscular pain and tension, and one of the most common questions I get asked is “how does it work?”.
I practice what is known as “Western medical acupuncture”, an adaptation of traditional Chinese acupuncture incorporating current “evidenced based” medical knowledge. It is commonly practiced in the UK by osteopaths, physiotherapists, chiropractors and GP’s.
In Western acupuncture, the acupuncture needles are used to stimulate the nervous system, usually at painful points of muscular tension known as “myofascial trigger points”. These can be at the same points used by traditional Chinese acupuncture. Inserting the needle is usually not painful, there may be a “pin prick” sensation when the needle touches the top layer of the skin.
I find acupuncture very effective at addressing muscular pains and tensions and inflamed joints. It is often quicker and less painful than massaging and manipulating the affected muscles and joints. It can also be effective relaxing the deep muscles of the spine which can contribute to sciatica and neck pain. Hip and buttock pain may also respond well to acupuncture.
If you have been thinking of trying acupuncture and would like to see if it can help you, please give us a call. If you would like a more detailed definition, the following British Medical Journal article has a good summary. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/aim.2008.000372