As far as anyone knows, acupuncture started in China thousands of years ago. It is a part of traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and like the rest of the TCM modalities; acupuncture is a holistic type of treatment. TCM and acupuncture believes that the body is fueled by chi, or vital life and that chi is composed of two opposing but complementary forces of yin and yang, similar to the positive and negative force in electricity. The major organs in the body are split between yin and yang organs. Solid organs are associated with yin and the hollow organs with yang. The body and particularly the organs are in balance and harmony when yin and yang forces balance each other. The balance can be disrupted when blockage of chi occurs on the meridians, energy pathways that transport chi energy all over the body, and the affected organs are not nourished with chi energy and become yin or yang energy deficient. Acupuncture then is applied to the blocked meridians to allow again the smooth flow of chi to those energy deficient organs, which then restores energy balance among the organs of the body.
Acupuncture is needed to ensure that the body’s energy is balanced and if not helps the body to achieve balance. Body pain, injury, sickness or aches are always a sign of an imbalance and therefore, acupuncture is effective in treating these problems. Acupuncture is very effective in treating conditions such as arthritis, PMS, flu, tendonitis, whiplash, upper and low back pain, migraines and headaches among others.
An acupuncturist has a different way of coming up with a diagnosis. He/she uses palpation, olfaction, auscultation and inspection as well as patient querying regarding his/her condition. Inspection means analyzing the tongue and face. According to TCM, the tongue’s coating, color, tension, size and shape manifest certain imbalances in the body. Olfaction and auscultation implies that the smell and sound which the body produce tells a lot about his state of health and querying the patient gives the acupuncturist valuable information of the whys and wherefores of the ailment. Finally, palpation is done to locate the areas of soreness and the strength or weakness of the body’s pulses.
Based on the findings of these procedures, an accurate diagnosis can be made and will decide what acupuncture points are to be treated. The needles used are stainless steel, hair thin needles that are disposable to prevent infection. The upper part of the needle may be covered with plastic or wire as this part is held on by the acupuncturist in Louisville while piercing the needle into the skin. The needles may be inserted at the sore points at about 3-5mm deep. A slight tingling sensation may be felt as the needles are inserted but this immediately disappears and replaced with a relaxing sensation that gives instant pain removal.