Acupuncture is the insertion of fine needles into soft tissue. There are different types of acupuncture and these include:
- Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM): which can be traced back as far as 1000BC and aims to relieve pain through restoring Qi (energy flow)
- Western acupuncture: aims to reduce pain by stimulating areas of the brain and spinal cord which produce pain relieving chemicals such as endorphins, melatonin and serotonin, and encouraging blood flow to the affected areas.
Research supports the effectiveness of acupuncture for pain relief and it is therefore used by physiotherapists as part of a comprehensive treatment plan.
Patients can be referred to physiotherapy from the pain clinic to help them build a management program for their problem/ condition. This booklet has been created to help you understand what to expect from physiotherapy before your first visit.