Acupuncture began as a practice of medicine over 3500 years ago in ancient China. It has continued to evolve as a complete system of medicine. The use of Chinese medicine and acupuncture in St Petersburg FL has become increasingly popular during the past several decades to treat a wide variety of conditions. One reason it is such a sought-after treatment is that it is a holistic treatment that gets good results while decreasing stress and improving overall health. Acupuncture can usually achieve these results for a much lower cost than conventional medical treatments.
Here in our St Petersburg acupuncture clinic, patients come in for a variety of reasons, including:
- Back pain and sciatica
- Anxiety issues
- Weight loss
- And much more!
What Is Acupuncture?
The treatment involves inserting very thin needles into the body into specific points. There are several hundred acupuncture points that are connected by pathways called meridians. The acupuncturist will choose from these points the ones that are best suited for the patient after a thorough diagnosis. Once the points are selected and the needles are inserted, the patient relaxes comfortably (usually 20 to 30 minutes depending on the type of treatment). Then the needles are removed. The entire process is designed to be as comfortable as possible. Sometimes other methods of treatments are added to a session. These might include moxibustion (which involves warming the acupuncture point), cupping (which involves a suction effect to increase blood circulation in the local area), and electric stimulation (which involves a small electric current applied to the needles to amplify their effect), or specialized massage techniques (such as tui na, trigger point therapy, myofascial release and neuromuscular massage therapy).
How Does Acupuncture Work?
The exact mechanisms are still being investigated by scientific research, and several theories are being explored. Among these are the gate theory in which the acupuncture works with the nervous system to interrupt pain signals, and the mechanism of stimulating endorphins and anti-inflammatory responses which are already part of our bodies healing resources. When the needles are inserted, they create a reaction in the bioelectric field of our body. We most commonly think of electric impulses in nerves and muscles such as the heart, but there are bioelectric fields within other cells and body tissues that are a hot topic of study in science today. The connective tissue in the body, or fascia, is one possible conduit for acupuncture signals to travel through the body.
Chinese medicine has unique terms to describe how acupuncture works, and these are sometimes difficult to understand. Terms such as yin and yang, qi and blood, and organ systems such as the Liver, Spleen and Kidney have special meanings which are not easily translated. However, they are very useful to the trained acupuncturist in terms of arriving at a diagnosis and treatment strategy. With the knowledge of how the acupuncture points work and how the meridians travel through the body, we are able to choose the best points for the condition being treated. For example, if we are doing acupuncture for migraines, we might choose some points that are directly over the painful area in the head, and then some points that are farther away on the hand or foot to provide the best treatment.
Acupuncture has been found to be effective for many conditions, and current research continues to inform new clinical guidelines. The strongest evidence to-date is for migraine, headache, low back pain, knee osteoarthritis, allergic rhinitis, nausea and post-operative pain. It can be effective in treating digestive issues, muscle and joint pain, nerve pain, colds and flu symptoms, stress and anxiety, weight loss, infertility and other reproductive disorders.
Acupuncture is a very safe form of treatment when performed by a state licensed acupuncturist. In Florida, acupuncturists who pass the rigorous training and licensing exams receive the designation of Acupuncture Physician (AP). In other states, practitioners may be known as Licensed Acupuncturists (L.Ac.). When searching for an acupuncturist near you, you can ask for referrals from friends and family or your medical doctor. The state organizations (Florida State Oriental Medical Association, FSOMA) and national organizations (National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, NCCAOM) are resources you can go to for more information.
Our acupuncturists value continuing education and research. Dr. Donald M. Eisenman, DAOM, AP, continued his training by completing an advanced doctoral degree in acupuncture with a focus on internal medicine at the Atlantic Institute of Oriental Medicine. He is continuing his studies in functional medicine at the Functional Medicine University. Dorothy S. Wells, AP, FABORM, continued her training by becoming a nationally board-certified specialist in reproductive medicine. She is a Fellow of the American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine. Additionally, she is a certified functional medicine practitioner by the Kalish Institute of Functional Medicine. She is currently pursuing an advanced clinical doctoral program with a focus on integrative health at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine.
Looking For The Best Acupuncture in St Petersburg FL?
Acupuncture can be useful for almost any health condition, and many patients come in to our St Petersburg holistic clinic on a regular basis to maintain a healthy body and mind. Call us today to find out how our holistic services, including acupuncture in St Petersburg FL, can help you achieve your health goals.