To find out more about our acupuncture services in Winnipeg and what conditions this treatment may help you with, contact us at Harper Kinetics today.
Neuro-Functional Contemporary Acupuncture
Historians have stated, “More people have benefited from acupuncture over the course of 50 centuries than the combined total of all other healing sciences, both ancient and modern.” Acupuncture’s goal is to restore normalcy, balance, resilience and strength by utilizing a combination of Acupoints located throughout the body. This is accomplished by a variety of means; the needle is just one.
Contemporary acupuncture has remodelled the ancient acupuncture approach and redefines its mechanisms and effects using present-day scientific understanding of human anatomy, physiology, structure and function. At first glance, contemporary acupuncture can look quite similar to traditional Chinese acupuncture. However, considerable differences exist between contemporary acupuncture theory and the traditional Chinese approach. In traditional acupuncture, early Chinese physicians discovered there is an energy network called meridians traversing just below the surface of the skin, which communicates from the exterior to the internal organs and structures. Collectively, there are over 1,000 “Acupoints” on the body. This energy — termed “chi”– works in harmony with the circulatory, nervous, muscular, digestive, genitourinary and all other systems of the body. When this vital energy becomes blocked or weakened, an effect in a body system or anatomic location becomes evident. Stimulation of one or a combination of key “Acupoints” on the body may restore harmony to the affected area.
In Contemporary Acupuncture, your practitioner (physician, registered massage therapist, physiotherapist, chiropractor, etc.) treats you only after a conventional medical/neuro-functional assessment has been made. This thorough assessment establishes which points will be utilized during treatment, which are specifically chosen to affect the particular nerve branches that are part of the presenting condition/dysfunction. The contemporary acupuncture practitioner only applies treatment following a conventional (scientific) view and regards the acupuncture as having certain local tissue effects, as well as providing segmental analgesia (local pain relief), extra-segmental analgesia, as well as central regulatory effects on the nervous system.
The practitioner will use acupuncture as a treatment modality along with other therapeutic approaches that fall within the scope of their practice, as needed. During any given treatment, small, thin needles are inserted into various points in the body and left in place for a period of time before removal. At times, the practitioner may attach electrodes to one or more needles and apply an electrical current to aid in treatment and at other times may choose to use no electrical input. This approach is currently described as neuro-functional electro-acupuncture.
How Does Contemporary Acupuncture Work?
Acupuncture produces many of its effects by stimulating nerve receptors in skin and muscle. Various substances are released that cause an increase of local blood flow that encourages tissue healing.
- Acupuncture helps to reduce pain locally where the needles are inserted and throughout the body.
- Acupuncture has a calming effect and produces well-being.
- Acupuncture inactivates myofascial trigger points.
- Acupuncture has effects on the brain.
- The effects of acupuncture accumulate when repeated.
- The contemporary scientific explanation of acupuncture is that needling certain points in the body stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the brain, spinal cord and muscles. These chemicals will change the experience of pain, or they will trigger the release of other chemicals and hormones which influence the body’s own internal regulating system. The improved energy and biochemical balance produced by acupuncture results in stimulating the body’s natural healing abilities and promoting physical and emotional well-being.
On the PHYSICAL LEVEL, acupuncture will:
- Reduce pain, swelling and the formation of scar tissue following an injury
- Help with general health maintenance, disease prevention, deep relaxation and stress reduction
- Relive muscle tension, stiffness and sprained ligaments
- Enhance energy vitality
- Ensure better circulation of blood
- Reduce blood pressure
On the MENTAL LEVEL, acupuncture will:
- Enhance a state of alertness, which leads to an increased capability to think more clearly
- Reduce mental stress, calming the mind
On the EMOTIONAL LEVEL, acupuncture will:
- Increase your sense of health and overall well-being
- Reduce levels of anxiety and nervous tension
- Assist in removing pent-up emotions, facilitating a change in old, invalid belief systems
- Increase awareness of mind/body connection, allowing you to feel more centred
- Enhance feelings of confidence and self-worth – helping you feel vibrant and strong
- Encourage an increase in free movement / increased mobility
- Establish greater peace of mind, as you will not have to worry about pain
What Conditions Can Acupuncture Treat?
Acupuncture textbooks list well over 100 different conditions that respond well to acupuncture. The World Health Organization, working in close harmony with the International Acupuncture training center of the Shanghai College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, has indicated acupuncture is effective in treating the following conditions:
- Neurological and muscular disorders: headaches, neck and back pain, sports injuries, sciatica, osteoarthritis, neuritis and facial pain
- Digestive disorders: irritable bowel, constipation, diarrhea and gastritis
- Menstrual and reproductive problems: dysmenorrhea and perimenopausal symptoms
- Urinary tract disorders: prostatitis and bladder dysfunction
- Respiratory problems: sinusitis, asthma, sore throat and recurrent respiratory tract infections
- Stress and psycho-emotional problems
- Tension, cluster, and sinus headaches
- Myofascial and low-back, neck, shoulder, and knee pain
- Prevention and treatment of nausea and vomiting (also due to chemotherapy and pregnancy)
- Treatment of pain
- Addictions to alcohol, tobacco and other substances
- Treatment of pulmonary problems, such as asthma and bronchitis
- Rehabilitation from neurological damage, such as by stroke
- Trigeminal Neuralgia
- Injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents
- Sports injuries
- Bladder dysfunction
- Bed wetting
- Tennis elbow
- Post-operative pain relief
- Gastric problems
- Skin conditions
- Abnormal blood pressure
- Neurologic syndrome
- Various eye problems
- Sexual dysfunction
- Osteoarthritis and arthritis
This is only a partial list of conditions acupuncture has been known to treat.
To schedule an appointment with our office in Winnipeg, Manitoba or to find out more about our acupuncture services, contact us at Harper Kinetics today.
Contemporary Acupuncture Safety
One of the strengths of contemporary acupuncture is its safety compared with other treatments or interventions. Serious side effects are very rare. Only single use, sterile, disposable needles are used.