Whenever you see or hear the word acupuncture, you’re probably thinking about a person lying down with a gazillion needles sticking out of their body. This is one of the many misconceptions about acupuncture since, in reality, the average number of needles used per treatment is just 5 to 20. Acupuncture is an ancient treatment that originated in Asia around 2500 years ago. The treatment focuses on correcting energy flow within the body.
How Does Acupuncture Work?
Medicinal needles are inserted into pressure points which are mapped out in a chart. The depth to which the needles are inserted depends on the type of ailment the person is suffering from. They are left in place for a minimum of 5 minutes and not more than 60 minutes. Acupuncture has time and time again proved that it does work and requires very few physician visits. It can be used to treat a variety of illnesses ranging from whooping cough, headaches, pain relief, muscle stimulation to controlling blood pressure.
It is based on the traditional Chinese belief that everything is a part of the universe and they are unified by one harmonious balance of complementary extremes of ‘yin and ‘yang’ of the life force known as “qi” (pronounced as chi). This qi is believed to flow through meridians, or pathways, in the human body. These meridians and energy flows are accessible through 350 acupuncture points in the body. Inserting needles into these points with appropriate combinations is said to bring the energy flow back into proper balance. There is no scientific proof that meridians or acupuncture points exist but acupuncture as a whole works for some conditions. In 2003, the World Health Organization (WHO) listed a number of circumstances in which they say acupuncture has been proven effective.
- high and low blood pressure
- chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting
- some gastric conditions, including peptic ulcer
- painful periods
- Allergic rhinitis
- facial pain
- morning sickness
- rheumatoid arthritis
- tennis elbow
- dental pain
- reducing the risk of stroke
- inducing labor
Is It Safe?
The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has regulated acupuncture needles as medical devices. So I guess it’s pretty safe. But the manufacture and labeling need to meet specific standards. The needles must be sterile, nontoxic, and labeled for one use only, by a licensed physician. This is because acupuncture is safe only if done correctly. Here are some of the risks if it is not appropriately handled.
- It is dangerous when the patient has a bleeding disorder or is under prescribed blood thinners
- Unsterilized needles may cause infections.
- If the needle is not of the proper standard it might break and damage internal organs.
- Although rare, if a needle is inserted too deep it might cause a failed organ like a collapsed lung.
So it is essential that you choose your physician carefully. Make sure he’s licensed and has good experience in the field. Even though this is completely safe when done correctly, I must admit that the thought of a person sticking needles into my body is just unnerving. So for those of you sharing the same feeling here is a much better alternative!
If you are someone who shares my fear for needles, then acupuncture pens are the way to go! Even if you are not afraid of them it’s still a must-have device because of the various benefits it offers. Though these pens can’t mimic the intensive healing capabilities of proper acupuncture therapy, they can still help you with recurring woes like migraine, headaches, muscle pain and you can even enjoy a relaxing massage therapy after a long day at work. They are also compact in size and can be carried easily while traveling. There are three different types of laser pens-Laser, Electric, and Meridian
Laser Acupuncture Pen
As the name suggests, the pen uses laser technology for pain relief. It mimics the process of acupuncture through a laser. All you need to do is to point to the device where you are experiencing discomfort and relax.
Electric Acupuncture Pen
In this case, electricity instead of laser energy electricity is used instead of laser technology. The pen emits electric pulses that provide massage therapy and help in pain relief. The electronic acupuncture pen is pretty easy to use and provides comfort in a short amount of time.
Meridian Energy Pen
The Meridian Pen uses vibrations for muscle stimulation and provides intensive massage therapy. It is also great for joint pains and muscle stimulation. They can also help in getting rid of fat and wrinkles.
So Acupuncture pens can do wonders for you within the comforts of your home. They come with different massage heads like spheroidal, node and dome which have different functions and can be used on different parts of your body. I don’t think one needs any more reasons to own this fantastic multipurpose toll. So get yours.