MIT Acupuncture, LLC.
Acupuncture & Pain
PAIN - For millions of people who live with pain, acupuncture is no longer an exotic curiosity. It's now widely accepted among the medical community, and it is pretty popular with patients as well. A recent survey found almost 3.5 million Americans said they'd had acupuncture in the previous year.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, your overall health is determined by the quality of the Qi (energy) flow through the natural pathways of your body (meridians). Energy or "Qi" needs to flow smoothly throughout the body to maintain its normal function, balance and health. From the Chinese medicine perspective, pain is caused by two energy imbalances. One is caused by the blockage of energy in a channel (meridian), which can result from physical trauma, emotional distress, or exposure to excessive pathogenic factors from the environment, such as heat, cold, or dampness. In addition, excess consumption of certain foods or drinks often contribute to the problem. This type of pain is usually acute, severe, or intermittent, and can present as migrating or fixed. The second is principally caused by a deficient amount of Qi - energy, when there is not enough Qi in the body. This type of pain is normally dull, chronic, consistent and fixed in location. Very often, people have pain caused by both conditions. Acupuncture treatment is often used after the evaluation of energy channels and after determining the types of energy imbalances that are present.
How does acupuncture work? - Most agree that it works by balancing the Qi, and enhancing the body's self-healing mechanisms. A more modern explanation derived from clinical research is that acupuncture of certain points on the body cause the release of hormones and chemicals that reduce pain, regulate the endocrine system, enhance immune function, and calm the nervous system, this has been shown in scientific research. The fact is that Oriental medicine is the most researched of all complementary health systems, and is recognized by the National Institute of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) which lists more than 90 conditions where controlled clinical trials have proven acupuncture as an effective treatment or proven to have a therapeutic effect.
BACK PAIN - Nearly 8 out of every 10 people will have low back pain at some point in life. Back pain is one of the top reasons people seek medical treatment. It is also the No. 1 reported reason for seeking acupuncture. The good news is chronic low back pain is one of the conditions that research suggests acupuncture may be an effective tool for treating. One recent review of 22 acupuncture studies showed that it provided short-term relief from chronic back pain.
SCIATICA is a common type of pain due to inflammation of the sciatic nerve, a large nerve extending from the lower back down the back of each leg. It is one of the most common disorders effectively treated with acupuncture, because getting rid of inflammation is what acupuncture does best. It does so without any known side effects.
FIBROMYALGIA: Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by the feeling of widespread musculoskeletal pain accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Researchers believe that fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way the brain process pain signals. Studies show that acupuncture may alter brain chemistry. It appears to do this by changing the release of neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters stimulate or inhibit nerve impulses in the brain that relay information about external stimuli and sensations such as pain. In this way, the patient's pain tolerance is increased. One acupuncture treatment in some patients may last weeks to help alleviate or neutralize chronic pain. It does so, very quickly, effectively and without any known side effect.