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Traditional Acupuncture:
Acupuncture has been developed empirically over thousands of years in the Far East.

Traditional acupuncture is a system of healing that stems back over approximately 3000 years. Zhen Jiu (pronounced as "Jen Jill") or acupuncture is one of the 4 traditional medical disciplines with Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the other three being Tui Na massage, Chinese Herbs and Qi Gung therapy.

In today's society, there are 2 distinct systems of acupuncture that is practiced within the UK which is Traditional Acupuncture which is represented by the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) and Medical Acupuncture whom are represented by the British Medical Acupuncture Society (BMAS).

As a traditional acupuncturist, the practitioner has a firm knowledge of Chinese medicine theory, acupuncture point location, meridian theory as well as a firm grasp of western science such as anatomy, physiology and pathology.

It's difficult to stress enough the breadth of problems that acupuncture may be able to help you with, so if your condition is not listed above please don't think this means that acupuncture won't be able to help you.

Acupuncture as an holistic therapy:
Traditional acupuncture can be considered as a holistic form of medicine as it works to improve the overall well-being of the patient, rather than simply focusing on the isolated treatment of specific symptoms. This can be seen in an old Chinese saying which is: "Treat the root as well as the Branches".

Acupuncture is a holistic system of medicine, rather than a technique for treating one kind of complaint. It can help with a very wide range of conditions.

Effectiveness of Acupuncture:
As with many conventional medical treatments, scientific research to confirm the effectiveness of acupuncture continues. Positive findings are reported frequently, here are some examples from BBC's news website:

- arthritis
- headaches
- high blood pressure
- how acupuncture may reduce pain
- morning sickness
- pelvic pain during pregnancy


So although no medical treatment (from prescription drugs right through to surgery) is able to help everyone with every problem, acupuncture brings great benefits to many people, and it could be just the thing for you!

Traditional acupuncture from a Western perspective:
From a conventional Western point of view, the mechanism by which acupuncture works is uncertain. Looking at acupuncture purely for pain relief, the 'gate' theory suggests that the needling effects areas of the nervous system and stops pain signals getting through to the brain. Another theory suggests that the needling stimulates the release of endorphins, the body's natural pain-killers. And this is just looking at one of acupuncture's many potential beneficial effects!

Scientific investigations continue, for example see this BBC article about the effect of acupuncture needling on electrical activity in different parts of the brain.

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