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The process of treating back pain with acupuncture, or any pain for that matter, is complex.  As an acupuncturist, we have many factors to consider in the treatment. Important factors for the acupuncturist to decide are what acupuncture points to use, how long the needles stay in, what position the patient should lie, the use of electro-acupuncture, additional use of cups, and other factors. 1. How to choose acupuncture points: Acupuncture points can be chosen based on location of the pain, type of the pain, and the underlying imbalances causes the pain.  Some pain, such as pain from sciatica, is best relieved by acupuncture locally in the lower back, around the sacrum, and throughout the course of the sciatic nerve.

Constipation is an issue that I often treat in my NYC acupuncture clinic. I always teach my patients this simple two-step acupressure routine for relieving constipation to supplement the acupuncture treatment. Rub belly in clockwise circle Rubbing your abdomen will help wake up your digestive system.  Place your whole palm on the abdomen and apply even pressure.  Not so much pressure that it is painful but you should feel your hand. Rub your belly in a big clockwise circle touching the edge of the ribs and the top of the pelvis.  Do this motion for 30 seconds. You can also casually rub your belly in this way during your relaxation time, listening to music, or before you go to sleep.

The bladder can have a mind of its own. Normally, the bladder relaxes as it fills and contracts only when you need to urinate. Bladder spasms can occur when the bladder muscles suddenly contract causing a sudden need to urinate.  In some people this can also cause pain. The symptoms of bladder spasms can be intense, impacting your work, education, and social life. Bladder spasms can occur in overactive bladder, interstitial cystitis, and other conditions. Acupuncture is an excellent way to reduce bladder spasms. Acupuncture works by resetting the body to be healthy and allowing the bladder to relax. Acupuncture therapy for bladder spasms Acupuncture theory is based upon the idea that channels connect different parts of the body. These

Acupuncture is a constantly evolving art.  Electro-acupunctrue was only developed within the last 100 years. Electro-acupuncture is used to augment the pain relieving and anti-inflammatory aspects of acupuncture Electro-acupuncture is very similar to regular acupuncture.  That is the acupuncture point selection is generally the same and the treatment time is also similar.  Electro-acupuncture provides additional small amount electric stimulation to the acupuncture needles.  The electric stimulation enhances muscle relaxation, the release of natural pain killers in the body, as well as decreases inflammation. Electro-acupuncture is most often used for chronic pain and inflammatory conditions.  The pain relief with electro-acupuncture can be so dramatic it has been used for certain types of surgery in China. History of Electro-acupuncture Electro-acupuncture for pain,

Yesterday morning I heard a distressing story on the radio about osteoporosis medication increases the risk of  unusual and serious fractures.  Women taking osteoporosis drugs called bisphosphonates are nearly five times as likely to have a serious unusual fracture.  Osteoporosis is a serious condition as hip and other fractures are terrible accidents, yet the side effects of the medication may be worse. One answer for many women may be tai chi.  This may particular a good choice for women who have osteopenia, when the bones are beginning to soften, but do not yet have osteoporosis, as the tai chi may be able to prevent the disease from progressing. Tai Chi for Osteopenia I always recommend my patients concerned about osteoporosis

  This acupressure routine helps promote sleep and relaxation. In addition, it can be used for improving concentration and reducing jet lag.  Often, I will give my patients these particular acupressure points to augment the acupuncture treatments for insomnia. Yin Tang- The Spirit Gate Location- on the forehead, in line with the nose above the eyebrows Stimulation- gently rub downward towards your nose Function- helps calm the mind and relieve stress Heart 7- Shen Men (The Spirit Gate)   Location- at the wrist on the pinky side of the hand Stimulation- If trying to go to sleep, gently rub towards the body.  If trying to concentrate or wake up, gently tap. Function- calms the spirit and nourishes the heart.  This

Headaches suck.  The pounding and pressure really can be very severe and greatly impact your life. But, there is hope, acupuncture can help by relieving the pain from many types of chronic headaches including migraines, tension headaches, and sinus headaches.  And recently, the research is supporting this idea. The Metanalysis on Acupuncture for Headaches A recent metanalysis of 31 studies, in the journal Anesthesia & Analgesia, showed that acupuncture was more effective than both medication and placebo acupuncture.  For those who do not know, a metanalysis is a more definitive study which examines many many previously performed studies.  The studies showed that acupuncture was stronger than placebo acupuncture for reducing headaches, and even stronger than medication for reducing headache frequency,

Although most patients come to see me for physical complaints, like back and shoulder pain, painful urination, migraines, or asthma, many find improvement in their mental state as well. A few of Chinese medicine’s good “side effects” include better sleep, less anxiety and depression, and help in stress management. After their first treatment, most of my patients notice that they feel more relaxed and often ask me why. A few of Chinese medicine’s good “side effects” include better sleep, less anxiety and depression, and help in stress management. For example, a patient who was coming in for a skin condition also found that his long time anxiety disorder was greatly improved. Another patient who was coming in for the treatment