Lower back pain can be frustrating, to say the least. In addition to the discomfort, it can cause sleeping problems, mobility issues, and other challenges. Thankfully, there are some forms of alternative medicine that have been proven to be effective in relieving lower back pain without the side effects of traditional medication; acupuncture is one such method.
Although acupuncture has its origins in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), it has gained traction in the Western world. It is widely respected as a complementary treatment because many people have experienced relief after trying it
Are you considering acupuncture to treat your lower back pain? In this article, we explain what acupuncture is and why it is a viable treatment option.
What Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a type of alternative medicine in which thin needles are inserted at specific points in the skin to treat pain and other issues. It is a procedure that facilitates the stimulation of your sensory nerves and muscles.
How Does It Work?
According to TCM, a healthy body is one in which Qi (pronounced chee), along with yin and yang, thrive in harmony. If these energy forces are out of balance, then it may result in an ailment like lower back pain.
In order to restore balance, the acupuncturist will insert needles at “acupuncture points”. These points create pathways or meridians so that Qi can flow through and renew energy in the body. They are also at sites or receptive fields that allow stimulation, which targets pain being processed by the central nervous system. The result? Significant pain relief.
What Are Some Benefits of Acupuncture?
If culprits such as poor posture, heavy lifting, and strenuous exercise are at the root of your lower back pain, then you may experience lasting relief with some acupuncture sessions. Additionally, you may enjoy other benefits such as:
- Improved sleep
- Increased energy
- Better mental clarity
- Reduced stress
- The ability to manage migraines and headaches
- Improved immune system
Moreover, acupuncture can be done in conjunction with other treatments. It is also a flexible form of treatment that can target numerous health concerns simultaneously.
What to Expect During Your Appointment?
The acupuncturist will talk with you about your lower back pain. They will then examine your skin and insert sterilized thin needles into it while you lie down or sit. In some instances, they may add heat to the needles.
Although it is not severely painful, you may feel a brief stinging or tingling sensation the moment the acupuncturist inserts each needle. This may be followed by a dull pain at the base of the needles.
You can expect the session to last anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour. The number of follow-up sessions required will be dependent on how extreme your pain is.
What Are the Risks?
Like all other therapy treatments, acupuncture is not without a few risks. Although rare, clients might experience the following:
- Insertion sites may bleed, bruise, or feel sore
- A needle may break and damage an organ
- Infection caused by unsterilized needles
It is important that you do your due diligence by ensuring that you book appointments only with registered and licensed acupuncturists. It is also wise to get the go-ahead from your doctor before signing up for acupuncture.
Contemporary Acupuncture Available in North Vancouver
If self-care methods such as rest and over-the-counter medications prove ineffective in relieving your lower back pain, you may want to consider acupuncture. At Movéo Sport & Rehabilitation Centre in North Vancouver, we have a team of registered and licensed acupuncturists who are dedicated to helping patients find relief. Schedule an appointment online today or call us at 604-984-8731.