Acupuncture works to help maintain your body’s equilibrium. It involves the insertion of very fine needles into specific points on the body, mostly the arms, legs, belly or back, to help regulate the flow of ‘qi’, your body’s vital energy. For various lifestyle and environmental reasons, qi can become disturbed, depleted or blocked, which can result in symptoms of pain and illness. Traditional acupuncture can be an effective therapy to help restore balance and promote physical and emotional harmony.
The fine needles do not go into nerves or blood vessels and are mostly painless. You may only occasionally feel a tiny prick, twinge or feeling of local numbness. These are all appropriate sensations for acupuncture and only last a few seconds.
The needles are then left in for about 20 minutes while you relax on a treatment bed. Most people get up after the treatment feeling energised and relaxed.
Treatment is aimed at the root of your condition as well as your main symptoms. This approach helps with resolving your problem and enhancing your feeling of wellbeing. You may notice other niggling problems resolve as your main health complaint improves.
A lot of people have acupuncture to help relieve specific conditions, especially pain conditions which have a good evidence base behind them (pain evidence), such as tension headaches, migraines, neck or back pain, osteoarthritis of the knee (knee pain) and temporomandibular joint pain.
Furthermore, because traditional acupuncture is designed to affect your whole body and not just your symptoms, many people choose to have treatment when they feel their bodily functions are out of balance, even without an obvious diagnosis. People often find that their mental health, sleep, energy and menstrual periods improve with acupuncture.
Some have regular ‘top-up’ treatments because they find it so beneficial and relaxing. For some conditions, such as migraine, acupuncture can be given to prevent flare-ups from occurring. For other conditions, such as overactive bladder syndrome, there is clinical evidence that acupuncture can provide some relief. Another benefit of acupuncture is that it can be given alongside other therapies or medication, in almost all circumstances.
Eve Rogans is an acupuncturist with special training in paediatric, obstetric and fertility matters. She is a very longstanding member of the London Acupuncture for Childbirth Team (ACTLondon), offering support before pregnancy, as well as throughout pregnancy and birth.
She has much experience in helping both men and women with fertility matters and around IVF treatment. She has been treating gynaecological and menstrual issues for over 40 years.