The use of alternative medical treatments is more popular than ever. For those suffering from migraines, acupuncture is a particular favorite.
Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese technique for rejuvenating and maintaining health by using thin needles that are inserted at various points in your body. The idea is to unleash blocked energy and allow it to flow freely throughout your body.
This Eastern procedure has gained greatly in popularity in the West over the past few decades. Even mainstream medical organizations have acknowledged its benefits in treating illness, including migraine. Among these organizations are the American Medical Association and the World Health Organization.
According to acupuncture concepts, energy travels in the body along channels called meridians. When these channels are blocked due to illness, injury, or stress, the results include pain. When specific points along the meridians are needled, blockage is cleared and the pain disappears or is reduced.
Medical professionals point out that meridians correspond to the body’s nervous system. They believe that acupuncture’s success derives from stimulating certain nerves.
Many migraineurs swear by acupuncture. They find it highly effective for both preventing migraines and for stopping them once they begin. Some use acupuncture exclusively as a treatment option, while others use it as a complementary remedy along with more traditional Western medical treatments such as medication.
Acupuncture really has no significant side effects. Rebound headaches are not an issue. As long as your acupuncturist is certified, there is no downside related to health. The worst that can happen is that it will not work for you and you will lose the cost of the session.
When treating migraine sufferers, the best points at which to insert needles are in the lower legs, hands, and feet. This may seem unusual – these places are far from the point of your pain, your head – but all meridians begin and end at the body’s extremities.
A good acupuncturist will ask questions about your pain because different headaches are associated with different meridians. You should be asked where your pain begins, which parts of the body it encompasses, and any other symptoms you have.
Do not fret about discomfort. Acupuncture needles do not inflict pain. Acupuncture needles are a lot thinner than needles used for injections. When a needle is inserted you should feel no more than a slight twinge.
A few migraine patients report that their illness is entirely eradicated through acupuncture. A majority acknowledges more modest but still impressive success, from 50 to 80 percent fewer migraines after just several sessions. A small minority claim no migraine relief from acupuncture.
The key to successful treatment is finding a good acupuncturist. Ask your doctor or a headache specialist for recommendations. Some medical doctors are trained as acupuncturist. Most states require acupuncturists to be licensed, so be sure to check on credentials before beginning treatment.
A good place to begin looking is at www.acupuncture.com. This site includes links to certified acupuncturists in your area and other resources. If you prefer to be treated by a medical doctor certified as an acupuncturists, you can visit the website of the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture.