Acupuncture’s Long History:

Acupuncture refers to an alternative medical practice involving the use of needles for stimulation of certain points on your body. Its origin is found in traditional Chinese medicine and dates back 5000 years.  Only recently, the Western medical community has accepted acupuncture as an effective treatment for many medical conditions, including sciatica pain relief.  One of the benefits of acupuncture, used for pain treatment, is it carries none of the traditional side effects associated with pain medication.  Use of acupuncture by patients in the United States increased by over a one million people in just a five-year period and is continuing to increase.

How Does It Work?

Acupuncture is minimally invasive and involves using needles that are hair thin used as a stimulus to create increased flow of a body energy referred to as qi. Acupuncturists use the needles to return that flow of energy to a more normal state along predetermined meridians.  In today’s Western medical community it is recognized as an effective treatment for pain.  The stimulation of the thin needles is believed to boost our body’s natural ability to counteract pain by producing pain-killing chemicals, as well as boost blood flow as an effective anti-inflammation treatment.

How Do I Find A Qualified Acupuncturist?

Make sure your acupuncturist has a valid license.  To be certified in most states it takes 1-300 hours of study and practical experience prior to taking the state test for certification.

There is a second level of certification referred to as” Diplomat” status.  This level of certification requires 3-4 years of advanced education at a master’s degree level.  A Diplomat of Acupuncture’s training includes standard medical history gathering as well as extensive practical on-site experience.  After completing the required course requirements they must take and pass the NCCAOM accreditation requirements.

What To Expect On Your First Visit:

A qualified acupuncturist will devote a full hour or more on your first visit discussing your health condition, your present lifestyle and other issues that impact your present health. This interview is critical to developing a custom treatment regimen that will be effective for your overall health.  The acupuncturist will want to know about any medications and supplements that you might be taking as well as any pre-existing medical conditions.  Treatment will usually take place over several weeks to several months depending on the severity of your pain and condition of your body.

In conclusion, if you are experiencing sciatica pain acupuncture has been shown to be an effective treatment.  Most patients will experience pain reduction from these treatments.  A general rule of thumb is that the longer you have been in pain the longer the acupuncture treatments might take to fully relieve your sciatica.  However some patients experience immediate pain relief.  They feel energized by the treatment and obtain a general overall relaxation of their bodies.