We here at Fletcher Chiropractic just wanted to say in our own little way:
Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Let us all be happy and merry with our family and friends this wonderful season.
Dr. Curtis and Dr. Kadi Fletcher.
Acupuncture involves the insertion on needles or the stimulation with electrical current/pressure of specific points throughout the body. Acupuncture is about balancing the flow of energy called chi. Chi is our life energy that flows through our bodies and it is affected by the stress that we deal with every day. Acupuncture helps to balance out our chi and the more balanced we are the better and healthier we feel. This is more of an eastern medicine approach to stress and treatment with acupuncture while western medicine views acupuncture as a way to stimulate nerves, muscles and connective tissue. Dry needling is a common use for acupuncture needles in the US. Overall, acupuncture works by stimulating the body’s natural response to injury by increasing blood flow and natural painkillers.
Acupuncture can be performed by using needles, with an electrical or laser stimulation, with a non-puncture needle, or with finger pressure. Needle stimulation is the most powerful form of acupuncture or meridian therapy. Meridian therapy is the actual name of the study of acupuncture, while acupuncture just indicates the use of needles to stimulate the different points of treatment on the meridian. There are 12 pairs of meridians on each side of the body making 24 main meridians in total, along with the Conception and Governor vessels that run along the front and back of the body, along with the center. For ease of description, we will use acupuncture in talking about meridian therapy. The 12 main or Principle meridians are named for different organs in the body that they correlate with and are divided into two groups- the Yin and Yang. The Yin meridians include the Lung, Heart, Pericardium, Spleen, Kidney, and Liver, and the Yang meridians are Large Intestine, Small Intestine, Triple Burner, Stomach, Bladder and Gall Bladder. Each meridian either starts or ends on a hand or foot and transverse the body.
Acupuncture is helpful by reducing the tension and inflammation around the injured and irritated nerve.
Using different points along the meridians that lie along the face, we have been able to help with bells palsy and reduce the stress to the facial and trigeminal nerves.
Trigger points are decreased with the use of placing a needle into the trigger point and physically breaking up part of the muscle fibers that are tightened.
Chronic pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia and myofascial pain syndrome are helped with acupuncture. Relieving stress and inducing relaxation is helpful for any chronic pain.
Allergy relief can usually be felt with the stimulation of the sinus points located in the frontal bone of the forehead or around the eye. Headaches can be helped also with decrease of muscle trigger points.
A useful acupuncture point that you can use at home is Large Intestine 4. LI 4 is helpful for pain of any kind. It is located in the web of each thumb and it can be stimulated for 30 seconds to help alleviate pain.
We hope you enjoyed this overview of what acupuncture may be able to help with but please consult a medical profession before trying any acupuncture on yourself or others. Give our office a call if you have any questions or have a look at our acupuncture page here on the website.
Well, pain sucks and it can come from many different causes. One thing we see a lot in the office is chronic pain in muscles and that soreness and stiffness/tightness that really never goes away. Well, there are some great modalities and techniques that we as chiropractors have in our tool box to help with the “muscle stuff” as some of our patients put it. Have a look at the following five ways that we can help with muscle, ligament, tendon and myofascial pain and injuries or the soft tissue stuff.
Graston Technique is a form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization that we use to help break down scar tissue and fascial restrictions. It is evidence-based and is useful working with neck and lower back pain, carpal tunnel and plantar fascia pain. It is also helpful along post surgical scars, runner’s knee and IT band syndrome.
Myofascial release is more of a hands on technique that involves sustained pressure into
the fascia and connective tissue that helps to restore motion and decrease pain. Hands-on active stretching can also be used to ease chronic muscle pain. Different muscle movements are incorporated with active stretching. Foam rolling is also a great option for myofascial release and something that you can do on your own. Look for a blog coming soon with pictures.
Rocktape is a brand of Kinesiology taping. It can be used for a variety of muscular conditions from swelling to sprain/strains. It was designed to help lift the skin and create space in an injured area. It helps to create more blood flow and has been used by athletes for years but it is now making the way into clinics all over the world to use with common injuries and pain.
Electrical Stimulation is used when the muscle is in a spasm and it is similar to a TENS unit but stronger. Electrical impulses relax the muscle spasm. The ultrasound used in our office is used to help reduce inflammation and muscle spasm. It is not the diagnostic imaging like they use in pregnancy. The ultrasound uses sound waves to heat and relax muscles and bring more blood flow/improving circulation. Electrical stimulation and Ultrasound are usually used during the acute phase of care or when there is more intense pain present.
Acupuncture is good in two different ways. Needles or acupressure can be used to help with trigger points and muscle sp
asms by using the dry needle technique. A needle or direct pressure is applied to help break up the spasm within the trigger point. The other application of acupuncture is the use of different therapy points that help to decrease pain and inflammation present in the area that is being treated. The points used may be near or far from the areas being treated.
There are many ways to treat muscles and connective tissue injuries but these tend to be the ones we rely on the most and that have proven to be the most effective and promote faster healing. If you are experiencing pain in muscles or soft tissue, please contact a medical professional and get it evaluated. There are ways to deal with the pain; don’t follow the old saying, “just live with it.” There are great tools out there for treatment and pain relief that can help keep you in motion. Give us a call today if you have any questions or concerns.