The term “acupuncture” describes a family of procedures involving the stimulation of anatomical points on the body using a variety of techniques. The acupuncture technique that has been most often studied scientifically involves penetrating the skin with thin, solid, metallic needles that are manipulated by the hands or by electrical stimulation.
Practiced in China and other Asian countries for thousands of years, acupuncture is one of the key components of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). In TCM, the body is seen as a delicate balance of two opposing and inseparable forces: Yin and Yang.
Yin represents the cold, slow, or passive principle, while yang represents the hot, excited, or active principle. According to TCM, health is achieved by maintaining the body in a “balanced state”; disease is due to an internal imbalance of yin and yang.
This imbalance leads to blockage in the flow of Qi (vital energy) along pathways known as meridians. Qi can be unblocked, according to TCM, by using acupuncture at certain points on the body that connect with these meridians.
There are 14 main meridians or channels that connect the body in a web-like interconnecting matrix of at least 2,000 acupuncture points.
Acupuncture can be used to treat a myriad of disease conditions Including: anxiety, depression, insomnia, asthma, low back pain, headaches, menopausal symptoms, premenstrual syndrome, neck pain, shoulder pain, and many more conditions.