Acupuncture For Neck Pain
Facts About Neck Pain
Your neck is a surprisingly delicate part of your body. Its importance is obvious—it holds your head up, after all! And when your neck is hurting or out of alignment, it can affect your quality of life. Here are some facts about neck pain:
- Neck problems are usually due to chronic tension or poor posture, often stemming from phone and computer use or even sleeping position and pillow height
- Tension headaches come from tightness in the neck, and they account for about 90% of all headaches
- Neck pain often results from car accidents. Whiplash is a common condition that can damage tendons, discs, muscles or vertebrae in the neck and cause long-lasting pain.
How does acupuncture for neck pain work?
There are a couple of theories for how acupuncture works:
- In traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is believed to help stimulate the flow of chi, which can eliminate neck pain (and other pain) while helping achieve a sense of overall wellbeing.
- Others theorize that acupuncture stimulates the nerves to reduce pain or that it stimulates the hypothalamus and pituitary glands to produce more pain-relieving hormones into the body.
- In short, it is a complicated subject that doctors are still working to figure out.
Why should I try acupuncture for my neck pain or tension headaches?
If you’re looking for a neck pain therapy that can reduce your use of painkillers and improve your overall quality of life, acupuncture is a good choice.
How do acupuncturists know where to place the needles?
Acupuncturists place needles in very specific points on the body based on years of research and study of the human body. These specific points are known to have certain functions. So, some acupuncture points work better on lower back pain, some work for neck pain, and so on. Your acupuncturist will find out where your pain is located and will use the correct points to ease pain in that area.
How long will my appointment take?
Most acupuncture appointments take about 30 minutes to an hour.
Does acupuncture for neck pain hurt?
Acupuncture for neck pain is a gentle process, and when carried out by an experienced acupuncturist, it should not hurt. Sometimes you may feel a sensation when the needles are being inserted, but it is very mild.
How big are acupuncture needles for the neck?
The needles used for neck pain are very tiny, usually about .00325 inches in diameter and one-half to one inch in length.
Can acupuncture cause bleeding?
In a normal person, acupuncture will cause little to no bleeding. If you are taking blood thinning medications or if you have a bleeding disorder like hemophilia, your chances of bleeding due to acupuncture are much higher. In these cases, consult with your doctor before seeking acupuncture treatments.
Is there a risk of infection?
No, the risk of infection is extremely small with acupuncture. The needles used are disposable, sterile one-time-use needles. They make microscopic punctures in the skin, and your practitioner will take great care to ensure your skin is clean and able to heal quickly.
Will I be sore after getting acupuncture?
Acupuncture does not usually cause soreness, but it is a possible side effect.
Who is acupuncture safe for?
It is safe for most people, though you should consult with your doctor to ask if there are any concerns. Generally, acupuncture is considered safe for just about everyone—including pregnant women, children, and the elderly.
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