Does Acupuncture Work

All About Cupping

By: - Alternative Medicine - September 29, 2011
does acupuncture work all about cupping

An ancient practice from the Chinese civilization is still practiced to this very day to alleviate pain, back pain, depression, infertility, arthritis and even Pre Menstrual Syndrome.  Known as acupuncture, it is considered highly effective but as soon as a person hears that it is of an ancient medicinal discipline, their first question is, does acupuncture work?  It ranks as one of the most well known and well established disciplines of healing among the other well known cupping therapy from the areas of South America.  Following is a brief explanation as to how these two amazing forms of therapy work.

Does acupuncture work?  The answer lies within the brain, in an area known as the hypothalamus and pituitary glands.  The primary function of these two crucial glands in the human body is to regulate and dispense endorphins which are hormones responsible for pain alleviation.  This amazing human made drug of sorts is reputed to be more that two hundred percent more effective than the properties of morphine.   We all know that when a sensation that creates pain, such as the touch of a hot stove element by error, a signal is immediately transmitted to the brain, which in turn sends an immediate response to remove the finger away from the element.  Through the application of needles into the affected areas with the reputed disruption in electrical impulses, the sensory points are stimulated which result in signals being sent to the hypothalamus and pituitary glands located at the bottom of the brain.  So does acupuncture work?  It is through the stimulation of these nerve channels with needles that the endorphins regulated by the two above named glands are released.  The pain killing endorphins then are triggered which results in pain relief.  As with the nerve channels that are stimulated, so too are the glands that regulate serotonin through the use of acupuncture, which aids in the relief of depression.  The overall result is better circulation, reduced spasms of the muscles, pain relief, and reduced inflammation.

Another well known therapy that originated in the South American civilization hundreds of years ago is known as cupping therapy.  As it was also known in ancient China as well, the process of applying sealed containers onto the surface of the skin and literally sucking out all of the air resulted in localized congestion which in turn induced a more in depth healing.  Cupping therapy thus literally pulls up the tissue beneath the surface of the skin and when left for very brief amount of time, usually a couple of minutes, blood stasis is created and localized healing.

Photo: cupping therapy – copyright 2004, Alanna Ralph – reproduced under Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike License 2.0 Generic,

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