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Acupuncture and Moxa for Back Pain

Acupuncturists have a choice in terms of how long the acupuncture treatment is. Different times have different clinical effects.

Most often, the acupuncture needles are retained in the acupuncture points for 20-30 minutes.  Traditionally we say it takes 30 minutes for the qi, the body’s energy, to circulate in the channels.

But if it is an acute situation, such as a back spasm, it is generally better to leave the acupuncture needles in for 15 minutes or less.  This is because the muscles will relax quicker in an acute injury like a back spasm.

When the energy is weak, what we call qi deficiency, it is better to leave the needles in for a longer period of time, such as 35 or 40 minutes in some cases.  This provides and opportunity for the body to work on improving the energy.

When using electro-acupuncture, as I often do for pain, 20 minutes has been shown to be the optimal amount of time for pain relief and reduction of inflammation.

Joseph Alban, L.Ac.

Joseph Alban, L.Ac.

Joseph Alban is a New York Licensed Acupuncturist and Board Certified Herbalist providing the highest quality Acupuncture and Chinese medicine care tailored to your needs.
Joseph Alban, L.Ac.

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