Acupuncture is a traditional method of healing developed by Chinese practitioners over 3,000 years ago. It is now widely accepted within western medicine and scientific research has proven its effectiveness for the treatment of pain. Our fully qualified practitioners use acupuncture to restore the body’s natural flow of energy by insertion of fine needles into specific points on the body. Acupuncture is often used by physiotherapists as an adjunct to other treatments to facilitate pain relief and healing.
It can be used to treat a variety of musculoskeletal disorders such as:
- Joint pain
- Back/neck pain
- Arthritic conditions
- Nerve pain
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is one of the oldest recorded forms of medicine used by traditional Chinese medical practitioners for over 3000 years. As a result of continuing research evidence proving the effect of acupuncture particularly for pain relief, it is commonly used by physiotherapists as an adjunct to their treatment of musculoskeletal conditions.
The traditional chinese theories of the efficacy of acupuncture surround the idea that for the body to remain healthy there must be balance in all its systems. If symptoms of pain or dysfunction occur there is said to be an imbalance in the relevant system. Acupuncture is then used to re-balance the Qi (chee) or energy flow in that system to stimulate healing. Current medical research however has increasingly been able to provide answers to western medical clinicians demonstrating that stimulation of the acupuncture points produces increased brain activity and a release of the bodies’ own natural pain relievers – endorphins. More recently research in Southampton has also proven an actual effect rather than a placebo effect on brain activity by using placebo techniques and PET scans to identify the increased brain activity with real acupuncture techniques.
What is it used for?
Acupuncture is claimed to help a wide range of conditions but is generally used by physiotherapists for the relief of pain. It can be used for:
- Arthritic / rheumatic conditions
- Recent of long standing pain from injury
- Back / neck / joint pain
- Nerve pain
- Muscular problems
Does it work?
In about 70% of cases acupuncture will provide pain relief. Although research has proven a definate physiological rather than psychological effect, it does not work for everybody and generally helps the particular conditions mentioned above. In all cases the benefit is cumulative – that is that results are generally seen with a course of treatment and not just with one treatment.
Will it hurt?
Acupuncture involves very fine needles and although a sensation around the point will be felt it should not be painful. Stronger sensations may be felt during the treatment as the acupuncture takes effect but again these should not be painful.
Why go to a physiotherapist?
The Pioneer Clinic physiotherapists are regulated by their professional bodies – The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and The Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists. They have completed a 3 Year BSc Hons course and many post graduate courses to maintain professional integrity and up to date treatment methods. Physiotherapists can use acupuncture alongside their medically accepted techniques for the treatment of musculoskeletal conditions to treat problems holistically and gain real results.
Our physiotherapists maintain links with local GPs and work in co-operation with NHS services to keep them informed and can refer on if necessary.