Acupuncture is a means of encouraging the body to heal itself. Self-healing is achieved by inserting very fine, sterilized needles to various depths through the patient’s skin at specific points that intersect with the body’s natural energy pathways or “meridians” of the body.
The practice originates from China, where it has formed an integral part of health and healing for thousands of years. During the second half of the twentieth century, acupuncture began to spread rapidly in Western Europe, the United States and Canada.
Traditional Chinese medicine views a person as an energy system in which body and mind are unified, each influencing and balancing the other. This energy or life force is known as Qi (pronounced “chi”). Qi flows through the body’s meridians that connect all of the major organs. Illness arises when the cyclical flow of Qi within the meridians becomes unbalanced or blocked.
Although it is unclear how acupuncture scientifically works, it is clinically proven to be one of the most effective ways to treat back, neck, shoulder pain and sports injuries. Other ailments for which acupuncture has been shown helpful include nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy, fibromyalgia, headaches and migraines, labour pain, low back pain, menstrual cramps, osteoarthritis and dental pain.
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