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A Beginner’s Guide to Acupuncture

by Nikki Uson

For many people, the thought of needles is enough to send them running in the opposite direction.

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Some people (think centuries' worth of them!), however, swear by acupuncture and even consider its amazing effects miraculous. So if you’ve been experiencing piercing headaches or suffering from a sore back for months, maybe it’s time to give acupuncture a go!

Before you make an appointment with a certified acupuncturist, here’s what you need to know.

What is acupuncture?

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Acupuncture, also called dry needling, originated thousands of years ago (with some studies tracing its origins up to 7,000 years ago) in China and is used as a traditional form of medicine. Ancient Chinese medicine is centered on the belief that health comes from a balance between the “yin and yang” of the life force known as “qi” (pronounced as chee).

Qi flows in and out of our bodies through meridians (or pathways) and can be accessed through 350 different acupuncture points. So when you’re feeling pain or a bit under the weather, it is said that you may have blocked or a deficient level of qi in your body. By tapping into the different meridians, an acupuncturist is able to correct the qi of a patient, strengthening the flow to make them healthy again!

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Modern-day doctors and specialists have deduced that acupuncture works by targeting the different nerves, muscles and connective tissues found in the different acupuncture points. When stimulated by the needles, the body experiences increased blood flow and the release of our natural painkillers called endorphins, causing the patient to feel relief.

What are the benefits of acupuncture?

When done by a certified practitioner, acupuncture is considered to be a very safe practice. While there are a few short-lived potential side effects (slight pain, bleeding or bruising where the needles were inserted), the benefits after are worth it. It can serve as an alternative treatment when medication has not proven effective.

What can acupuncture treat?

While the list of illnesses treated by acupuncture is continuously growing, some of the conditions it has proven to treat include neck pain, osteoarthritis, knee pain, allergies, digestive problem, depression and other mood disorders, headaches and migraines, muscle pain and spasms, and chronic back problems and pain.

Curious about this ancient form of healing? Metafactor Wellness Center is one of the best places in the metro to try it! Here's what you can expect from a dry needling/acupuncture session with them.

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  1. Your acupuncturist will first assess your medical history and condition in order to determine the best acupuncture points to stimulate.

  2. This will be followed by a cleansing session to make sure the area is squeaky clean and to eliminate the risk of an infection!

  3. You will be asked to either lie down or sit, depending on the area that needs to be stimulated. In some cases, you may be asked to remove certain clothing in order to better access these points.

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  1. Ultra-thin, single-use needles are carefully inserted into the specific acupuncture points throughout the body. These needles are usually a few inches long and very, very fine so there’s no need to worry about the pain!

They’re designed to be for single-use (for health safety and hygienic purposes) and are disposed of immediately after your session. The number of points stimulated per session varies based on your condition. On average, there are around 12 points used in a typical session, but the number can increase or decrease depending on your acupuncturist’s assessment.

How deep the needles go is also highly dependent on your condition—some may be inserted just underneath the skin while other acupuncture points need to be stimulated by reaching into the deeper muscle tissue.

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  1. Try to relax and keep still while the needles are in place. They may be left there for a few minutes to up to around 30 minutes.

  2. Once the needles have been removed, cryotherapy is done to minimize any possible post-treatment soreness.

For best results, you should visit your acupuncturist once every other week for a total of 2-3 sessions.

Check out our exclusive offer with Metafactor Wellness Center for 1 session of Dry Needling here.

Metafactor Wellness Center
114 Jupiter Corner, Orbit Street
Brgy. Bel Air, Makati
(02) 871 4262
(0915) 925 5224

For the best-priced deals on beauty, wellness, and fitness, sign up with Deal Grocer.

About Nikki
Nikki is a petite, part-time social media manager and full-time unicorn-chaser with a thirst for exploring the big world. She’s on a quest to find the best eats, people to meet, and exciting (mis)adventures that life has to offer. When she’s not busy discovering new cities, she tries to make the world a better place one cookie at a time.

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