Acupuncture as a major technique of traditional Chinese medicine is recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as an effective form of treatment. It is a healing technique of inserting needles into certain body points, known as acupuncture points or acupoints.

Acupuncture points are the locations where the qi of the energy channels rises close to the surface of the body. There are fifty-nine meridians in the body. Together they form a network of energy channels throughout the body. There may be as many as 2000 acupuncture points are mapped to the meridians. More than 400 acupuncture points are classified by the WHO. All points are listed by name, number and the meridian to which they belong.

Most of these 400 points are located along the twelve standard meridians and the eight extraordinary meridians. Also, there is a category of acupuncture points known as the extraordinary points. They are acupuncture points which stand on their own, not being part of any particular meridian.

What is qi? How do the energy channels in the body work? Some may misunderstand acupuncture can trigger some kind of power in your body. Let us try to explain in a simple way: acupuncture can improve the flow of blood and oxygen in the blood vessels, which influences your health.

How to choose an Acupuncturist?

This is the most important question if you have never received acupuncture before. Some of the doctors do have a referral list of acupuncturists. You can also ask family and friends for recommendation. Many acupuncturists specialized for certain health conditions. You need to choose the right acupuncturist for your health condition.

What is Acupuncture like?

For your first acupuncture, you should expect the first visit is longer than follow up visits. Experienced acupuncturist needs to gain a complete understanding of your main health concern, general health and lifestyle. After a diagnosis is given, an acupuncture plan is developed to suit the individual health condition. Acupuncture needles are very thin, and most people feel no pain or very little pain. If you do feel pain, you need to tell your acupuncturist to adjust the needles for your comfort.

History of Acupuncture

Acupuncture is one of the commonly used traditional Chinese medicine therapies. It has a clearly recorded history of about 2000 years. Some Chinese scholars believe that the practice of acupuncture began during the Stone Age when stone knives or sharp edged tools were used to puncture and drain abscesses.

As acupuncture developed, stone knives were discarded and needles of stone and pottery were used. These simple and primitive needles are still used in some of the rural areas of China. Eventually metal needles began to appear and these took the form of the classical “Nine Needles”. The “Nine Needles” were initially made of either bronze, or gold and silver, and seem to have been first used about 2000 years ago. Some acupuncturists still use gold and silver needles, but most acupuncturists use stainless steel needles now. (Types of acupuncture needles)

Learn more about how Chinese medicine can be applied to everyday life

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