Acupuncture is a healing system and consists of inserting into the skin, very fine needles to stimulate specific points in the body (acupoints) for therapeutic purposes. After puncturing the skin the points (acupoints) are stimulated to balance the (Qi) movement of energy to restore health.
The energy force running through the body (Qi) comprises two opposites, yin and yang which must be kept in balance to be in good health. The Qi travels along meridians which consist of 12 main pathways on each side of the body - named after 12 main organs. The needles are inserted where the meridians come to the surface to adjust the body's vital energy so that the correct amount reaches the correct part of the body at the essential time thus enabling the body to heal itself!
Needles are discarded or disinfected and sterilized after each use. Once needles are inserted, there are a variety of techniques that aid in the stimulation of the area depending on ailment being treated for.
Location of the points selected, nature of the problem, patient's size and age, and acupuncturist's style are factors that will determine how deep he puts the needles in. Pain level is considered mild. The patient will need to uncover the area to be worked on while usually laying on a massage table. The duration, severity and nature of the complaint will determine the number of treatments required for healing.
Acupuncture is generally safe if performed by a qualified acupuncturist, using quality sterile needles. Effectiveness of acupuncture varies person to person with some needing over a dozen sessions to start to get any health benefits.