Acupuncture is a health science that is used to treat both pain and dysfunction in the body. Acupuncture has its roots in China. Authorities agree that acupuncture is between 5,000 and 7,000 years old.
Its use spread throughout ancient Egypt, the Middle East, and the Roman Empire, and later into Western Europe as merchants and missionaries to China told of the amazing discoveries the people of the Orient had made. Acupuncture did not become known on a national level in the United States until 1971, when diplomatic relations between China and America were relaxed.
At first glimpse, acupuncture appears strange, as its primary practice is the utilization of needles placed in the skin at various locations to relieve pain or affect a body part. Early Chinese physicians discovered there is an energy network traversing just below the surface of the skin.
Traditional acupuncture is based on Chinese therapy of the flow of energy through pathways that crisscross the body. Acupuncture allows the energy to flow toward areas that are energy-deficient and away from areas where there is too much energy. In this way, acupuncture regulates and restores the harmonious balance of the body’s energy. Acupuncture is performed by the insertion of thin, sterilized, disposable needles into the body at specific points proven to be effective in the treatment of specific health problems.
The World Health Organization has said acupuncture is suitable for treating the following: ear, nose, and throat disorders such as toothache, sinus inflammation, and earaches; respiratory disorders such as asthma; digestive tract problems such as ulcers, constipation, diarrhea, and reflux. Nervous system and muscular disorders such as headache, frozen shoulder, sciatica, low back pain, arthritis, and certain types of weakness or paralysis respond well to acupuncture as well.