FAQ Acupuncture

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is defined as the insertion of solid needles in the body for therapeutic purposes.  It is a treatment that can relieve symptoms of some physical condions.  It may also encourage the patient's body to heal and repair itself where possible. 

Is medical acupuncture like traditional Chinese acupuncture?

There are similarities between them, although they vary greatly in their approach to the management of many conditions.  Medical acupuncture is based on Western medicine and research, while tradtional Chinese acupuncture has its foundations in an ancient theoretical base.  With this in mind, it is still worth considering that one may not be in existence without the other. 

How does acupuncture work? 

Acupuncture stimulates the nerves and can produce a variety of effects on the body.  It increases levels of the body's natural painkillers like endorphins and serotonin in the central nervous system (spinal cord and brain) and so modifies the way pain signals are received.  Modern research demonstrates that acupuncture can affect a wide range of the body's systems.

What will I feel when having medical acupuncture?

The needles are very fine, much finer than injection needle.  You may feel a small pinprick, and depending on the type of technique chosen by your practitioner, you may also feel a muscle ache or twitch. These are all normal, positive and encouraging reactions to medical acupuncture, and may indicate greater relief from your symptoms.

Your practitioner has been trained in various needling techniques and will select the appropriate treatment for your condition. Medical acupuncture is a natural adjunct to your care, it is still vital that you follow the advice of your health professional and follow the plan of management recommended by them for optimal recovery.

Is medical acupuncture safe?

In general, there is very little risk associated with medical acupuncture when performed properly by a trained practitioner. Single-use, sterile, disposable needles are used. Serious side effects are very rare.