Acupuncture Works!

Acupuncture works in a series of treatments, similar to physical therapy, radiation therapy or exercise, & the effects are cumulative – very often long-lasting or permanent. The way Acupuncture works is by triggering the release of the supercharged energy molecule, ATP= adenosine triphosphate, which is made in each of our cells and is present and necessary for ALL of our bodys’ processes and functions to occur.

ATP breaks down to adenosine & 2 phosphates, & can convert back again to ATP, depending on what the body needs at the time.  Acupuncture is most well known for treating pain. Adenosine is released during acupuncture & has anti-inflammatory effects & mediates all types of pain: acute, chronic, & neuropathic.

The reason Acupuncture is effective to treat so MANY different conditions, is because ATP & adenosine are present in ALL cells, in ALL body tissues, in ALL body systems, & used for ALL body functions!

In a sense, an acupuncture treatment ‘reminds’ the body how to function when it is healthy ~ moving easily & without pain, all of the systems working smoothly and efficiently, emotions are calm, steady, and happy, with quality sleep! Acupuncture establishes homeostasis, or balance, by reminding the body how everything is ‘supposed to work’ together; how the systems (endocrine, reproductive, immune, cardiovascular, digestive, metabolism…) function when they are healthy- without disease and illness, & pain free!

ATP, the supercharged energy molecule in each of our cells, is the modern day equivalent of Qi, the energy described in Acupuncture & Chinese medicine.

From the 3000 year old Chinese medicine perspective, acupuncture works by promoting the movement of Qi, or energy, throughout the body, which directly impacts the body’s ability to function properly and nourishes our cells, tissues, organs. The concept of ‘qi’ originates from what the Chinese call ” life force” or animating energy”, it is found in nature and all living beings and is responsible for creating harmony and balance in health. If qi is blocked and does not flow freely, pain and illness will result…

In other words, ATP needs to be made available or accessible for our body to use, in order to function properly. Acupuncture stimulates the smooth flow of qi, by triggering the release of ATP for us to use, as needed.  This method is also referred to as “Purinergic Signalling”, due to the components of ATP, (adenenosine and 2 phosphates), being purines.

These findings are credited to the work of neurobiologist & nobel prize winner, Geoffrey Burnstock, president of the Autonomic Neuroscience Center @ UCL Medical School, who coined the term “Purinergic Signalling”, discovered in the 1970’s.



Does It Hurt? ( See cute pic;)
The second most posed question when people come in for an acupuncture treatment is, “Does it hurt?”
My favorite response: My five year old daughter asks for it. She gets off the bus, chucks her backpack to
the ground, raises her little, exasperated hands to her head and says, “Mom! I had a SO, SO stressful day!” (In kindergarten;) “ I need my achoopunture! I want Yintang and my stomach points.” Which are
actually on her legs, as she point to them. She gets into her comfy spot, does her yoga breathing and after 3 teeny acupuncture needles, she usually falls asleep within minutes! Right away, the body starts producing the calming, feel-good endorphins, such as, serotonin and oxytocin, so people start relaxing. If there is pain, the anti-inflammatories that start getting released begin to soothe the pain. For example, the young babies that have been brought in by their parents for care, respond with curiosity when the teeny acupuncture needles get inserted, for such things as constipation. No tears, no crying! And, because children are amazingly efficient at healing, they have typically had a bowel movement within minutes to hours, after struggling from painful constipation for days. Happy little one = happy parent! If the little people stories didn’t convince you, that acupuncture is more relaxing than painful, our furry friends and actually even the bald ones;) love to get treatments. My golden chomped a bumblebee one time, out in the boonies, on a Sunday. Within a very few minutes her face started swelling up and she was gasping for breath, as I can only guess the bee probably stung her somewhere in her throat. Knowing I didn’t have access to a vet within miles on a Sunday, and only being a student of acupuncture at the time, I wasn’t yet experienced with the effects of acupuncture but I was too scared not to try. Two little needles in her paws to treat the face and throat and Yintang again, my daughter’s favorite point,
and within minutes my pup was breathing normally with her face swelling dissipating! Granted, golden retrievers are pretty chill in general but at no point did she try to get the needles out or off or even react in pain, so it must have hurt a lot less than that bee sting. I’m sharing these stories in hopes to alleviate some of the fear that people have around acupuncture because a lot of people could benefit from the efficacy of these treatments. Acupuncture is the oldest clinical medicine in the world & it reminds the body how to heal itself : It helps people to be pain-free, avoid surgery, and treat illness and disease. It restores calm balance. It’s very effective and efficient with the right prescription series for each person. So don’t let the fear of needles hold you back from getting what you need to be healthier! Find yourself a properly educated acupuncture physician (Google nccaom.Org); find someone that you feel comfortable with and trust, and go experience how strong & balanced you are truly able to feel. And
don’t forget to ask for Yintang;)