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Acupuncture

Acupuncture TreatmentI am a Registered Acupuncture Practitioner with the Chinese Medical Institute and Register (C.M.I.R.) and trained by Chinese doctors from Beijing University of Chinese Medicine and Pharmacology.  My acupuncture practice in Sheffield, South Yorkshire will offer you the benefits of the most up to date knowledge and research about acupuncture and Chinese Medicine coming out of the hospitals in China.

Chinese Medicine is considered an alternative medicine but it is holistic healthcare at its best and treats each person as an individual so whatever your health problem, this traditional medicine, by using an accurate differential diagnosis will determine what type of treatment and prescription is right for you, whether it be for pain relief, stress, or cosmetic acupuncture for health and beauty.   Read below to see if acupuncture may help with your problem.

Can acupuncture may help you with your problem?

Acupuncture can treat almost any illness to give relief from pain, emotional stress and allergies and is also used in cosmetic acupuncture as an anti-aging therapy to promote health and beauty.  It is helpful to combine it with Chinese Medicine herbs.

Many of my patients have been ill for a long time and are searching for a different approach to their health problems.  Some of the conditions that respond well to acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine are:

  • Arthritis, both  osteo-arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis and any pain associated with musculo-skeletal problems or sports injuries
  • Skin disorders including eczema and psoriasis, and skin conditions relating to allergic reactions
  • Pain associated with migraines, neck, shoulders, facial pain, dental pain, pre- and post operative pain, pain associated with cancer treatments
  • Stress and tiredness,  particularly associated with lack of sleep or insomnia
  • Stomach and gastro-intestinal disorders, IBS symptoms possibly associated with food intolerances, and also nausea and vomiting associated with cancer treatments or post-operative nausea and vomiting
  • Upper respiratory tract disorders such as asthma, allergic rhinitis
  • Reproductive disorders, including infertility and menstrual problems
  • Urinogenital disorders
  • Circulatory disorders also respond well

How many treatments will you need?

Treatments are usually carried out once or twice a week depending on the severity of symptoms.  Response is individual and depends on how long you have been ill.  Most people feel relief from symptoms after one or two treatments and some people need more before they start to feel better.  The usual course is to try at least six treatment sessions.  Some of my long term patients have realised the benefit from regular  appointments once a month which allows them to keep on top of any underlying problems and maintain their good health free from stress and pain.

Important information to note about acupuncture and Chinese Medicine treatments.

You are an individual and as such your treatment programme may be different from someone else with a similar condition.  This is called treating by differential diagnosis according to your syndrome.  Your progress may be different and you may need more treatments than someone else.

It is important to understand that your healthcare treatment does not just involve your sessions in the clinic but also includes changes you have been advised to make in your diet, lifestyle and in your daily routine.  Holistic healthcare involves you in the process.

If there is anything else you would like to know about Acupuncture  and Chinese Medicine please read the information here:  frequently asked questions

 

Frequently asked questions

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one of the tools of Traditional Chinese Medicine where needles are inserted into special points on the body called acupuncture points which Traditional Chinese Medicine recognises as areas where the flow of Qi (or life force energy) can be manipulated.  Traditional Chinese Medicine theory uses the concept of Qi to describe our life force and how when the Qi is blocked then illness can arise.

What is treatment like?

The needles are very fine, the thickness of a few strands of hair. There is usually no pain and only a sensation is felt momentarily called “De Chi” or “needling sensation”. This can be a tingling, warm or numb feeling around the location of the needles.
You can expect around 4 to 10 points to be treated on different parts of the body.

The needles can be heated, this is called “moxibustion”, they can be stimulated with a low voltage device, this is called “electro-acupuncture” or they can be stimulated by hand or simply left in place.

What if I can’t tolerate acupuncture?

When people cannot tolerate acupuncture it is possible to use herbal medicine, acupressure and Tuina (Chinese massage) or other devices such as cupping, acupoint stimulators, lasers etc which stimulate the acupuncture points to influence the flow of Qi.

How quickly will I notice a difference?

This varies from person to person. A lot of people notice a difference after the first treatment, but it may take three or four treatments before a real improvement is noticed, especially if you have been ill for a long time.

There could also be other reasons why you are not responding. These might be related to any medication that you are taking, or something in your environment which you cannot avoid.  Another reason may be that you are not following the full advice about changes in your lifestyle, diet or exercise regime.

It is important to understand that your treatment does not just involve acupuncture, but also changes that you are asked to make in your daily routine

How does Acupuncture work?

We do not know the exact mechanism but studies have shown that there are changes in neurotransmitters in the brain, hormonal changes, immune responses and other biochemical responses when the needles are applied to acupuncture points.

Some studies have also shown that there is a link between stimulation of acupuncture points and the transmission of messages in the central nervous system in the spine to the brain releasing pain reducing endorphins, serotonin – described as the happy hormone, and neurophysiological responses that improve circulation, immune response and control nausea. This action may explain why pain relief can be so dramatic for many people after only one treatment and also the feeling of relaxation that often follows.  Many people experience a very profound release of tension after their first treatment and report back that they slept very soundly for the first time in ages.

Are there any adverse reactions to Acupuncture?

Most people find that Acupuncture is a very pleasant experience and does not cause them any problems. However, Acupuncture is a very powerful form of treatment which goes to the source of the problem. If the problem is one of a long standing illness then there will be many blockages in the meridians. If you imagine a blocked piped which you then try to unblock, sometimes it is difficult to push out the blockage, then suddenly the pipe become clear and the turbid water rushes out. This type of reaction in a person may be described as a “healing crisis” which can produce some temporary unpleasant effects. TCM drives out the pathogens and they must leave the body through the excretory system, through the orifices and through the skin. After a “healing crisis” there is usually a very positive shift towards healing. This does not happen to everyone but is something that you must take into account when coming for Acupuncture. It is always wise to telephone me to discuss any unusual symptoms following a treatment if you are worried so that I can explain what is happening.

Is there anything Acupuncture cannot treat?

Precautions need to be taken in certain circumstances when acupuncture is contra-indicated.

Serious infection/illness with high fever – these should be treated with medicine such as antibiotics and be supervised by a medical doctor, although acupuncture can be used in conjunction for example to help bring down the fever and reduce pain.

Pregnancy – if you are pregnant it is advisable to avoid acupuncture, especially in the first and third trimester. Exceptions to treatment is for malposition of the foetus and in childbirth.

Some types of mental illness should not be treated and are best treated under the supervision of a medical doctor.

What about Cancer?

Cancer cannot be cured with Acupuncture but pain and depression associated with cancer or cancer treatments may be alleviated.

How is a differential diagnosis made?

A Chinese Medicine diagnosis is very different from a conventional western diagnosis.  A disease can stem from a different source in one person than from another, and so it is important to get this differential diagnosis correct because it makes a difference to which acupuncture points and Chinese herbs will be used in your treatment.

Differential diagnosis involves looking at all aspects of you and your life. Your full medical history will be taken, including any drugs you have been prescribed, the results of any medical tests, your family history will be considered for any problems from genetically transmitted problems, a physical examination, which includes visual aspects such as looking at your eyes, skin tone, breath, odours, elimination function, sleep pattern, and palpation of certain points on the body. Your diet and lifestyle, friends, workplace and home environments are also considered. The final two aspects of the consultation are Tongue Diagnosis and Pulse quality.

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