Acupuncture is the insertion of very fine needles on the body's surface, in order to influence physiological functioning of the body. It is the main therapy used by Oriental Medicine Physicians to restore balance in the body.
Proper function of the body depends on the natural flow of energy called Qi, though a network of channels or meridians, which connect every organ system and every part of the body. Acupuncture points are distributed throughout the body where the practitioner inserts the needles to produce a physiological effect aiming to restore the even flow of Qi, thus restoring balance and wellness in the body and mind.
Acupuncture therapy usually involves a series of weekly or biweekly treatments in an outpatient setting; the length of the treatment depends on the patient’s constitution, severity of the complaint or injury and the degree which it has compromised the patient’s functionality.
Although each acupuncture practitioner has his or her own unique style, each visit typically includes an exam, an assessment of your current condition, the insertion of needles, and a discussion about self-care tips. An acupuncture visit generally lasts about 40 minutes.
Before the needles are placed, you’ll lie down on a comfortable surface; depending on where the needles are to go, you will lie facedown, face up or on your side. Your acupuncturist uses single-use sterile packaged needles and generally the procedure isn’t painful. It’s common, however, to feel a certain pressure sensation when the needle reaches the correct depth. After placement, the needles are sometimes moved gently or stimulated with electricity or heat; as many as a dozen needles may need to be placed for each treatment. Once the needles are inserted, they’re usually left in place for five to 25 minutes.
Other techniques may include moxibustion (burning herbs to heat acupoints), cupping, auricular therapy, acupressure and Tui-na (Asian massage).
Acupuncture seems to be useful as a stand-alone treatment for many conditions, but it’s also increasingly being used in conjunction with conventional Western medical treatments.
Studies indicate that acupuncture offers not only symptomatic relief for a variety of diseases and conditions but treats the root imbalance and corrects it. The Wolrd Health Organization has proven the value of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine in professional clinical practice for the treatment of (including but not limited to):
Low back pain, Musculo-skeletal Injuries
Joint Pain & Stiffness
Anxiety, Depression, Addictions
Dizziness, Insomnia, Fatigue
Fibromyalgia, Digestive Issues
Osteoarthritis - Arthritis
Gynecological Disorders, Infertility
PMS, difficulty loosing weight
Whether you choose Oriental Medicine as your primary care or choose to incorporate it in your current treatment to address your needs, Dr. Wagenknecht will work with you (and your current practitioner) to ensure you receive an optimal level of care.