People seeking relief from the deep stinging of neuropathy in the extremities of their bodies may want to consider acupuncture as a treatment option. Neuropathy is a condition in which nerve damage causes intense pain, often in the peripheral parts of the body, such as the hands and feet. This disorder can be the result…
Popular Acupuncture Treatments
Acupuncture has been around for approximately 3,000 years and originated in China. It is a type of alternative medicine that involves inserting specialized needles into the skin at very specific points. The treatment may help with a variety of health conditions, including musculoskeletal disorders, neurological issues and gastro-intestinal disorders. You have probably seen the treatment depicted in movies or television shows. Although it may look painful, most people find it to be only mildly uncomfortable. It is also reported to deliver rapid relief from pain and other symptoms.
Popular acupuncture techniques
Traditional Chinese medicine style
TCM-style acupuncture is the most common type used in the United States. Even though the word “traditional” is in the name and can lead people to think the method is of ancient date, this form was actually developed after 1949. TCM also includes Chinese herbal medicine, acupressure, tui na and cupping.
Japanese-style acupuncture developed after the Chinese version was introduced over 1,500 years ago to Japan. Although the basic goals of treatment are largely the same, Japanese practitioners stimulate the skin more superficially and use finer needles than their Chinese counterparts. Japan contributed Kanshinho to the field, in which a guiding tube is used to minimize the pain of the initial needle insertion. Many Japanese therapists also use traditional heat therapy (moxibustion) as part of their acupuncture services.
Electroacupuncture is a more modern that has only recently experienced popularity as a treatment for the relief of pain. During this procedure, needles are inserted into the skin at specific points, much like the other types of acupuncture, but the technique differs by sending electric pulses through the needles. Your chiropractor or therapist can control the intensity and frequency of the pulses being delivered to the acupuncture points.
Electroacupuncture is similar in some ways to transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. The primary difference between electroacupuncture and TENS units is the way in which electrical currents are delivered. TENS units use electrode pads, whereas electroacupuncture sends currents through needles into the body.
Which style is most appropriate for you?
With all the different styles and techniques available, it can be challenging to determine which method is most appropriate for your needs. Fortunately, you do not have to make this decision on your own. Consult with your chiropractor or therapist to determine what type of acupuncture is recommended for your type and degree of pain. If you are concerned about possible discomfort from the needles, ask about the possibility of testing one small area before committing to a full session. Keep in mind that although there may be initial pain as the needles are inserted, it is typically fleeting, and the treatment may deliver noticeable pain relief to your body in a short period of time.
Many people experience some reduction in pain after receiving acupuncture treatments. The ancient practice has been used for about 3,000 years to help people recover from injury, chronic headaches and general discomfort that may not respond to other types of treatment.
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