Understanding Acupuncture and Its Origins

January 13, 2016 / Behavioral Wellness Center / 0 Comments /

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practice involving the insertion of thin needles at specific points on a patient’s skin to relieve symptoms of various ailments. TCM assumes that health problems result from imbalances in the natural extremes of yin and yang, parts of the delicate network of life force known as Qi. The acupoints that run all along a person’s body are carefully located on meridians by which energy, or Qi, flows. The goal of acupuncture is to use needles inserted in certain combinations and too certain depths to manipulate the flow of energy and regain balance.

The modern take on how acupuncture affects the body is explained through concepts of neuroscience. For Western medicine practitioners, the needles serve to stimulate nerves, muscles and connective tissue thereby increasing blood flow and triggering the body’s natural painkillers.

Whether you practice TCM or Western medicine, acupuncture can be used as standalone or combination treatment to alleviate pain and other symptoms involved with surgery and various diseases. Today, medical practitioners are searching for more ways in which acupuncture can serve as a valuable and effective therapeutic treatment.

Origins of Acupuncture

The practice of needle punctures as a form of therapeutic treatment originated in China roughly 2,000 to 4,000 years ago. While the exact beginnings of acupuncture are still a debated topic, it was during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) that a piece of literature was published which formed the foundation of modern acupuncture. The text describes 350-365 points on the body represented as channels through which needles could be inserted to influence the flow of energy, or Qi.

Despite a decline, and eventual banning, of acupuncture practices in the 19th and 20th century due to an increased reliance in Western medical practices, its potential use as means of basic level healthcare for a large population was sought after by the Communist government. The reinstatement of acupuncture as a basic healthcare service along with herbal medicine in the late 20th century became known as traditional Chinese medicine. Soon after, extensive and ground-breaking research was conducted on acupuncture with the goal of finding a scientific explanation for its numerous benefits. The acceptance of acupuncture in other Asian countries as well as Europe, Canada and America was gradual over the centuries as word spread of its therapeutic benefits.

Discover the Benefits of Acupuncture

At Behavioral Wellness Center, we have comprehensive understanding of acupuncture by means of combining the traditional Chinese perspective with the modern perspective. Our very own Dr. Consuelo Camarillo is a licensed acupuncturist in McAllen who can help answer your questions about acupuncture and how it can benefit you. Call us at 956.66.0655 to schedule an appointment today.