Recently I was asked if I would like to blog, and I was very hesitant about it, but I agreed not knowing what I got myself into. After agreeing, I was asked to write a blog about acupuncture, a million thoughts came into my head regretting what I had just agreed to do.
“Oh no, what did I get myself into?!” “I’m a cosmetologist, I know nothing about acupuncture.”
But after thinking about it, the only thing I knew about acupuncture was the sticking of needles in your body. I had no idea why or where this idea came from. I had no idea what acupuncture is helpful for. So, I immediately got on the computer and started researching, and I was quite surprised as to what I found out. I hope you find my research as interesting as I did.
Noun |ac·u·punc·ture|: an originally Chinese practice of inserting fine needles through the skin at specific points especially to cure disease or relieve pain
According to an ABC article, a growing number of Americans would prefer to stop popping pills and avoid going under the knife to treat a bum knee, achy lower back, or sore hip. Instead, they’re turning to the ancient Chinese practice of acupuncture to help ease chronic joint pain. It’s based on the premise that a subtle life energy—or “qi |ch·ee|”—circulates through the 14 major energy channels of the body, known as meridians. The channels are like “roadways” that transport qi to every part of the body, including its internal organs and tissues.
Acupuncture is said to stimulate these meridian points by easing the pressure of the channels and correcting the body’s imbalances by allowing the qi to flow more freely. Others believe that acupuncture merely stimulates the nerves causing them to release endorphins already found in the body. Elle Woods stated it best in the movie Legally Blonde, “Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t kill their husbands. They just don’t!” Endorphins act as a natural sedative and by stimulating the nerves and releasing these endorphins, patients begin to see a release in pain.
Originally acupuncture needles were not made of stainless steel but of stone, bamboo and bone. Today’s needles are extremely fine in diameter (about the thickness of two human hairs) and are sterile and disposable. So how does it work? Acupuncturists feel your pulse and look at your tongue to gain information about your state of health and plan a course of treatment. It is also highly individualized – for example, if 50 people with the common cold received acupuncture all 50 people could have different acupuncture points chosen as part of their treatment.
Acupuncture has been shown to be effective for the treatment of nausea and vomiting in adults following surgery or taking chemotherapy and postoperative dental pain. It is also effective for
- chronic headaches
- back, neck, and shoulder pain
Practitioners (and patients) have also seen results with a wide range of conditions, including:
- respiratory and gastrointestinal illnesses
- side effects of chemotherapy
- mood disorders, such as depression and anxiety.
Personally I am afraid of needles, but if it could help my lower back pain, I will definitely give it a try.
Thanks for reading! I know I found my assignment to be quite eye opening and am glad I took the time to learn about this ancient healing art.
xoxo Kylie – Apprentice Stylist
Blogging for Back To Bliss’ Team Journal