Can Acupuncture Help Arthritis?
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, over 54 million adults in the United States have been diagnosed with arthritis. This alarming number ranks arthritis the No. 1 cause of disability in the United States.
The majority of people diagnosed with arthritis begin to feel the symptoms between the ages of 30 and 50. It is also more commonly found in adults who are overweight.
The chronic pain and swelling that limits mobility in the joints prevents people from participating in daily activities and can worsen with age. There are many ways to find relief from arthritis and acupuncture is becoming a commonly used method.
Acupuncture originated in traditional Chinese medicine and is becoming more widely used and accepted in the United States. According to Chinese tradition, good energy is known as “qi” (chee) and bad energy obstructs the flow of good energy which is called “bi.” Acupuncture is said to block and remove bad energy and support the flow of good energy. This is known to alleviate chronic pain and inflammation and improve the way the body functions.
Acupuncture is a form of treatment that uses needles through your skin at certain points on your body. These points along your body are known as meridians, or pathways that stimulate the nerves and connective tissue. It helps to boost wellbeing and balance your energy while relieving inflammation and pain. It can also make you feel very relaxed and calm at the end of the treatment, depending on how your body reacts to it.
When needles are inserted in the proper places throughout your body, it triggers a release of certain neurotransmitters that are believed to reduce pain sensations. The production of endorphins and cortisol allows for a natural pain relief response that improves overall body functions.
According to a study published in U.S. News, acupuncture has been seen as a complementary method to other approaches when treating arthritis. There is no proven scientific research that acupuncture can cure arthritis, but many patients have found positive affects after testing this method.
If you are considering acupuncture to relieve arthritis, it is important to find a reliable specialist known as an acupuncturist. It is important to discuss with your specialist their experience treating arthritis pain and other types of chronic conditions and inquire about their education. This will confirm that your specialist is competent and capable of treating your arthritis properly.
The treatment works by swabbing the pressure area with alcohol and then inserting a very thin needle. These needles are the size of hair and should not feel painful or feel like much at all. There can be anywhere from five to 20 needles inserted during a single treatment and they are kept in for several minutes to an hour.
The needles can allow you to feel an ease of pain as soon as 24 hours after the treatment. It is a great option to try if you want to find a more natural method of relief. It is important to consider the risks and dangers of acupuncture to make sure that you are qualified for treatment.
For example, if you have a lot of disabilities and are unable to lie still for the time allotted, this may not be a pleasant experience for you. Also, if you are taking prescriptions like blood thinners, you should talk to your acupuncturist and confirm that there will be no adverse reactions.
The best way to find an acupuncturist is through a referral from a physician or online at the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. Acupuncture is a great technique to try for relieving pain and inflammation caused by arthritis.