Acupuncture is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine, a comprehensive healthcare system nearly 4,000 years old. Chinese medicine can effectively treat most health conditions, especially those in which Western medicine has had little success. This integrative, natural medicine encompasses acupuncture, herbs, nutritional therapy other healing techniques to achieve and maintain optimum health and prevent illness. It focuses primarily on finding and treating the root cause of illness rather than just treating the symptoms.
Most health problems are caused by imbalances in the body. Acupuncture can restore and achieve the body’s balance by working with the body’s life force, or Qi (pronounced “chee”). Qi is a dynamic, vital energy that permeates every living thing. It flows in the body through 14 energy pathways –also known as “meridians” — which run beneath the skin to communicate with the body’s major organs.
What is Qi?
At the core of this ancient medicine is the philosophy that Qi (pronounced “chee”), or vital energy, flows throughout the body.
Good health is dependent on the abundance, balance, and smooth flow of energy (Qi) within the body, much like a flowing river. When Qi becomes disrupted or blocked, imbalances occur and can result in pain or illness. This can be compared to a large rock blocks a river: water backs up, and flow is impeded and that can cause problems.
Qi flows through specific pathways called meridians. There are fourteen main meridians inside the body, each connected to specific organs and glands.
Meridian pathways are like rivers flowing inside the body. Where a river flows, it transports life-giving water that provides nourishment to the land, plants and people. Similarly, where meridian pathways flow, they bring life-giving Qi that provides nourishment to every cell, organ, gland, tissue and muscle in the body.
How is Qi disrupted?
An obstruction to the flow of Qi is like a dam. When Qi becomes backed up in one part of the body, the flow becomes restricted in other parts. This blockage of the flow of Qi can be detrimental to a person’s health, cutting off vital nourishment to the body, organs and glands.
Physical and emotional trauma, stress, lack of exercise, overexertion, seasonal changes, poor diet, accidents, or excessive activity are among the many things that can influence the quality, quantity and balance of Qi.
Normally, when a blockage or imbalance occurs, the body easily bounces back, returning to a state of health and well-being. However, when this disruption is prolonged or excessive, or if the body is in a weakened state, illness, pain, or disease can set in.
Acupuncture directly affects the body’s Qi, unblocking obstructions and balancing the flow of energy to facilitate the bodies’ own healing process. It focuses on re-balancing the flow of energy by the gentle insertion of ultra-thin needles at specific points on the body where Qi can be accessed.
When a hair-thin needle is inserted into the body, the brain sees it as an invasion, so it sends out blood, enzymes and endorphins to the area. Much like when you cut yourself, the body responds to start the healing process. Basically, acupuncture is simply amazing at facilitating your body’s own healing power!
Blockage of the flow of Qi can be detrimental to a person’s health and leads to various signs and symptoms or health concerns.