What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is one of the traditional Chinese Medicine techniques that has been used for healing purposes for centuries. It has been practiced in China for more than 3,500 years and in recent decades has become very popular in western countries.
Traditional Chinese Medicine emphasises the importance of lifestyle as the root cause of illness; citing bad eating habits, working practices and emotional difficulties of daily life among others.
In the first chapter of the Nei Jing; The Yellow Emperor asked Qi Bo why people in the "old days" used to live 100 years and now live only up to 50. Qi Bo replied that: "The Ancients knew the Tao, followed the laws of Yin and Yang and cultivated their health. They were moderate in their eating and drinking, they had a balance between work and rest and avoided getting overtired. This maintained the balance between Shen (Mind-Spirit) and the body, and thus they were in good health and had a long life. People nowadays behave in the opposite way. Since they do not follow the path, they rapidly age. "Thus disease and health are due to lifestyle”.
Acupuncture along with other techniques helps us to recover health and balance.
How does it work?
This method involves inserting very thin needles into specific
points of the body in order to balance our energy: Ying and
This allows the flow of Qi in our body and restores our
physical and mental health.
These specific points are located in several areas of our body,
the main ones can be found in pathways of energy (Qi) called
meridians. These pathways conduct the Qi between the
surface of the body and its internal organs.
Every point and the combination of them has a different
effect on our Qi and therefore on our health.
Insertion of needles
The needles are pre-sterilised, very thin and are
used only once. After use they will be disposed of.
They will be inserted in place and left
for 20 - 30 minutes.
You may need to adjust or remove certain pieces
of clothing. If you feel uncomfortable in any way,
please let me know.
Does it hurt?
Every person experiences acupuncture differently, most people feel only a slight scratching sensation which passes quickly when the needles are inserted. Others feel a slight tingling or a dull ache. This is a sign that the needle has reached the meridian point.
Italso depends on the point of insertion (some may be more sensitive than others) and the stimulation applied with the needle. Most people feel a sensation of relaxation. Although if you feel pain, please let me know.
Is it safe?
It is a very safe technique when practiced by a trained and qualified acupuncturist.
This treatment does not involve drugs or any kind of substances so we do not have to worry about adverse reactions or problematic combinations with other medical treatments. Any minor side effects that do occur are mild and self-correcting.
There are certain conditions that must be divulged to the acupuncturist before receiving the treatment like metal allergies or infections or pregnancy. This is why I do a comprehesive clinical history on your first visit.
What does it treat?
The World Health Organization has recognized that Acupuncture can help to treat several conditions such as:
Neuromusculoskeletal conditions: Arthritis, neuralgias, dizziness, muscular pain...
Emotional and psychological disorders: Depression, stress, insomnia and anxiety.
Circulatory disorders: Hypertension, anaemia...
Addictions: Alcohol, nicotine and other drugs.
Respiratory disorders: Sinusitis, asthma, allergies, bronchitis...
Gastrointestinal problems: Ulcers, chronic diarrhoea, constipation, indigestion, gastritis...
Acupuncture combined with other therapies can be the solution to a lot of chronic disorders that are now affecting western society more than ever.
What can I expect on the first visit?
This is when you tell me about your health complaint and what you hope to achieve with the treatment. Please also inform me about any medication you're taking and whether you have tried any other therapies (complementary or conventional)
Traditional Chinese Medicine is a holistic approach to the person.
It is essential to complete a comprehensive clinical history to ensure a full picture can be created.
You may be asked questions about your sleeping habits, tolerance to dampness, cold or heat and dietary habits amongst others. An examination of the tongue and pulse... Although it might seem odd is very important in order to establish a diagnosis and create a personalised therapeutic plan.
Depending on the condition, the needles will be inserted into certain specific points to create the desired reaction in the body. Moxa and cupping can also be combined in your treatment. You will be advised should this be necessary.
Most of the energy we get in life comes from the food we eat and the air we breathe. For this reason, I will advise you on your diet and whether supplements may be helpful.
According to Chinese medicine, we need mental clarity and mindfulness to achieve health. Stress, multitasking or anxiety can lead to disharmony. We will also focus on these aspects.
The first visit will take about 60 minutes. The following visits will be shorter depending on your needs. It may take several visits to see improvement or a solution to your problem. It is therefore very important to establish a treatment schedule with your therapist that meets your needs.
Before your appointment
It is recommended not to have a large or heavy meal before having acupuncture. If you're hungry try a light snack instead.
I will look at your tongue when diagnosing, it is helpful to avoid any drinks that may alter the tongue's colour (i.e. tea or coffee) for one hour before the appointment.
Many of the acupuncture points are located on the arms and legs, so wearing clothes that allow access to these areas is recommended.
If you are new to Acupuncture please, let me know so I can explain the process and ensure you are comfortable throughout.