What is acupuncture and how does it help?

Acupuncture is based on Taoist philosophy (Taoism is a popular Chinese religion) according to which a vital energy called Qi runs through our body. This vital energy consists of two well-known complementary poles, the Ying and the Yang. The Qi flows through the body by means of twelve channels called meridians, six with Ying polarity (negative) and six with Yang polarity (positive). Each meridian is linked to an area of the body centred on an organ (the meridian of the liver, lungs, heart, etc.).

Energy must be allowed to flow freely through the meridians at all times. If the energy is blocked, the person’s health is affected. In order to assess the circulation of this energy, the acupuncture practitioner feels the six Chinese pulses situated in three different regions of the two wrists. The practitioner uses three different degrees of pressure on the patient’s radial artery in this process.

The studying of Chinese pulses allows for the detection of imbalances in energy flows in one of the meridians which may result in the emergence of diseases in different organs in the body in the short or long term depending on the meridian concerned.

Preventive and curative medicine

There are 650 acupuncture points in the human body which the practitioner can stimulate to regulate vital energy. Some of these points invigorate whilst others disperse or pass energy from one meridian to another.

All round effective techniques

The acupuncture points can be stimulated in different ways

  • using needles: this is the most common technique in the East
  • using heat: this is the moxa technique which consists of heating the points
  • using massage : this is the Shiatsu technique
  • using electricity : this technique is also called electro-acupuncture and electro-stimulation therapy and is mainly used in hospitals.
  • using lasers.