Why Choose Acupuncture?
Acupuncture for pain management has been used for centuries. Because it treats your body as a whole, acupuncture not only reduces pain immediately but it can help you avoid future pain in the same areas. It’s so effective that conventional medical doctors often suggest acupuncture treatment for pain.
The most popular form of pain relief that Western medicine has to offer is pain medications and anti-inflammatory drugs. If you’ve spent a lot of time in pain, you know that these medications have unreliable results. After a while, their effectiveness wears off. The side effects from prescription medications can often be worse than the pain conditions you are dealing with.
The mechanisms of acupuncture that have been identified by a large body of evidence include promoting blood flow, reducing inflammation, stimulating the body’s healing mechanisms through activating the nervous, immune and endocrine system, and releasing the body’s natural pain killers such as endorphins, norepinephrine and enkephalin, 10-200 times more potent than morphine.
No matter what types of pain you are experiencing, acupuncture has the solution. During your first consultation, your acupuncturist will work with you to identify your pain and create a treatment that is designed to heal your body. In a matter of just one session, you’ll feel the benefits of using acupuncture to treat pain.
Sports Injury Treatment
Acupuncture can be used to help decrease swelling, spasms and inflammation. Additionally, it can be used to control pain, increase range of motion and help promote healing. Because of its broad range of applications, acupuncture can be used during any of the phases of injury. The focus is not only to treat the injury but also to treat any underlying conditions that may predispose an individual to injuries. This is especially important when treating chronic or recurrent injuries that interfere with life activities or athletic performance.
Injuries occurring from sports are mostly due to trauma or overuse syndromes involving the musculoskeletal system and its soft tissues. Trauma to these soft tissues, including ligaments, tendons and muscles are generally the result from falls, blows, sprains/strains, collisions, compressions crushing and disruptions of the healing processes due to inflammation.
Studies have shown that acupuncture has measurable effects on the flow of blood to certain areas of the body, which could in turn boost athletic performance. One such study conducted at the Beijing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine involved athletes running 5,000 meters, and then sitting for acupuncture treatments before they had a chance to catch their breath. The heart rates of the athletes who received the treatments recovered more quickly than those in the control group.
Another study published in the American Journal of Acupuncture measured the effects of acupuncture on anaerobic threshold and work capacity during exercise in healthy young males. Researchers found that individuals in the acupuncture treatment group had higher maximal exercise capacity and were able to perform higher workloads at the onset of blood lactate accumulation (OBLA) than individuals in the placebo group. The individuals that received acupuncture also had lower heart rates.
A recent study published in the January, 2008 issue of the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine examined the effects of acupuncture on cyclists. Twenty young (between 18 and 30 years of age) male cyclists underwent three tests per week, riding a stationary bike for 20 kilometers as fast as possible. The volunteers were divided into three groups that either received acupuncture, sham acupuncture or no acupuncture. Acupuncture points were chosen on the basis of Traditional Chinese Medicine and administered immediately before cycling. Sham acupuncture was shallow needling of known acupoints. Not only did the study show that the group that received acupuncture had a higher RPE scores compared to the other tests. The men receiving the real acupuncture treatments completed their cycling tests at a higher acceleration than the others.