Perhaps even implausible, acupuncture may seem like an unconventional remedy for persistent pain. However, this traditional method is now accepted as a complementary therapy for certain types of osteoarthritis, low back pain, and neck discomfort.
How Does Acupuncture Work?
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), which includes acupuncture, is 3,500 years older than conventional Western medicine. It works by putting pressure, heat, and needles on certain bodily parts. The idea is that by stimulating these areas, the body’s inherent energy, also known as chi or qi, is released or redirected since blockages or imbalances of this essential life force are the source of sickness and suffering.
Whether It Works
Numerous studies, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH), show that acupuncture treatments are especially effective in treating chronic pain, including headache, back and neck pain, osteoarthritis, and knee pain. It often lessens the frequency and intensity of tension headaches and might even stop migraines. Acupuncture “appears to be a fair alternative for persons with chronic pain to explore,” the NIH finds.
According to a review study that was published in Practical Pain Management, acupuncture’s ability to relieve pain relies on blocking the cause of it by adjusting endorphin levels. Additionally, these writers discussed the advantages of acupuncture for temporomandibular joint disease (TMD).
Patients often see their acupuncturist frequently just to keep up a sense of all-around health. Acupuncture is seen as non-invasive and mild, despite the fact that it involves putting hair-thin needles into different regions of the body.
Finding a Good Acupuncturist: Some Advice
Since last 18 years, Dr Aaron Perry DOM has been working as an acupuncturist in The Villages Florida. He suggests that anybody who is new to acupuncture search for a practitioner who is qualified and licenced first (more on that below). Beyond that, he advises finding a medical professional you are comfortable with. “Our personal styles are just very unlike. It’s like asking an artist to paint me a picture of that flower after paying them. You’ll see a lot of various images of the flower.
Ellen Harnett, a health and nutrition coach, used to see a doctor on a regular basis for back discomfort over 20 years ago. During the acupuncture treatment, she felt stiff and uneasy. Even worse, she received no assistance. However, she started seeing someone comfortable with her four months ago. According to Ms. Harnett, she feels so at ease that she “almost falls (asleeps) on the table.” More significantly, with each treatment, she experiences some, though transient, alleviation from her degenerative disc back pain. There might be a few days of relief.
What Qualifications Must You Consider?
State-by-state variations exist in acupuncturist licencing standards. States vary in their level of regulation. To set standards of practise, the Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (CCAOM), the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, and the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) were founded in 1981. (NCCAOM). Finding the best practitioner for you might sometimes be a little confusing. However, the majority of states need the NCCAOM certification, and both Acufinder and the NCCAOM website include useful search tools for locating a qualified acupuncturist in your region.
As at the time of writing, neither Medicaid nor Medicare cover acupuncture. However, some insurance firms do. Calling the number on your insurance card and inquiring about it is your best option. If they do, follow up with a few further inquiries, such as:
How many sessions do I have?
What is the insurance company’s payment amount?
What is the typical co-pay at a recommended provider for acupuncture? (This is the out-of-pocket cost for each visit to a doctor or other healthcare professional on their provider list.)
How much will I pay for practitioners who are not in my network? (This is the out-of-pocket cost for each visit to a doctor or other healthcare professional that is NOT on their provider list.)
Who is required to do the acupuncture?
Will an MD have to recommend me to the acupuncturist?
The amount of my deductible
What ailments are treated with acupuncture? (Many insurance plans only pay for treating pain)