All the physiotherapists at Spire Liverpool Perform are chartered practitioners
Acupuncture is a form of treatment that dates back as far as 1,000 years BC. It is a holistic concept that has a tradition in re-establishing a correct balance in the body’s energy, known as Qi, and thus establishing health and wellbeing.
Acupuncture is a skill employed by Chartered Physiotherapists in their integrated approach to the management of pain and other disorders. The treatment involves inserting very fine, single-use, disposable needles into specific points on the body known as acupuncture points.
How does acupuncture work?
The insertion of acupuncture needles into very specific points is based on research and clinical evidence that acupuncture can reduce pain by stimulating the brain and spinal cord to produce natural pain-relieving chemicals such as endorphins, melatonin and serotonin.
The release of these chemicals assist the body’s healing processes by reducing inflammation and pain. The acupuncture may be used as a stand-alone treatment or in conjunction with other physiotherapy methods of treatment.
The needles may be inserted and left for just a few minutes (known as trigger point acupuncture), to facilitate specific muscle relaxation or to stretch a muscle, or they may be left in-situ for 20-30 minutes (known as conventional acupuncture) which may be used to treat more involved structures or tissues.
Is acupuncture safe?
Acupuncture is safe when practised by a member of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (AACP) as the physiotherapist adheres to the strict hygiene guidelines and must comply with the training and educational demands that are required to remain on the AACP register.
The needles used are pre-sterilised, individually packaged and disposable. Following treatment they are disposed of in special containers. All the physiotherapists at Spire Liverpool Perform are chartered practitioners and are HPC and AACP registered.All AACP members are covered by comprehensive professional liability insurance.
What is electroacupuncture?
This technique involves attaching small clip electrodes to two or more needles to potentiate the effect of the needles. The small electroacupuncture (EAP) machine can deliver variable amplitudes and frequencies to the acupuncture points via an electric impulse which feels similar to mild pins and needles.
EAP contributes to the mechanisms of pain relief by stimulating the chemicals in the brain assisting with analgesia, relaxation, sleep, mood and wellbeing. It is used more frequently for chronic pain conditions and there is solid evidence and research to support its use.
Can acupuncture help me?
Acupuncture can help a great many conditions including:
- Osteoarthritis, especially of the knee
- Back and neck pain
- Tension-type headaches, including migraines
- Shoulder and elbow pain
- Soft tissue injuries
- Hip and leg pain
Combined with physiotherapy, acupuncture is now a recommended method of treatment by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) for persistent, non-specific low back pain (NICE 2009).