Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is growing in popularity in the U.S. TCM involves the use of many different therapies, including herbs, acupressure, cupping therapy, and exercises such as tai chi. In the U.S., acupuncture is probably the most well-known of TCM treatments.
Acupuncture is a healing practice used to treat chronic pain and other medical conditions, such as arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, and more. It involves inserting thin metal needles at various depths under the skin at specific points on the body. The needles stimulate blood and oxygen flow through the surrounding tissues, reducing pain and promoting healing.
There are many types of needles used for acupuncture. The most common are:
- Three-edged Needle (Sanlengzhen) – a triangular needle used for bloodletting or to stimulate specific body points.
- Ringheaded Thumbtack Needle (Xianzhen) – a small needle attached to a plaster that is applied to the surface of the skin
- Intradermal Needle (Pineizhen) – a short needle that is inserted into the skin where it remains for a specific period of time.
- Dermal Needle (Pifuzhen) – a needle that is inserted into the skin and removed immediately.
- G-Type Needle – used for sports medicine.
Acupuncture Needles Are Regulated by the FDA
Unfortunately, some people give acupuncture a hard pass because of the needles. In addition to a natural aversion to being poked with needles, there are concerns about infections, bleeding, organ punctures, and nerve damage.
The needles used for acupuncture treatments are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They require that all needles be made from stainless steel, have nontoxic handles, and that they be sterile in their packaging. In the state of California, only single-use acupuncture needles are allowed.
There is Little Pain During the Insertion or Removal of The Needles
Because the needles are so thin, there is usually little pain during insertion or removal. In fact, many people are unaware that the needles have been inserted at all. Typical acupuncture treatments use 5 to 20 needles; they may remain in place for 10 to 15 minutes.
Only qualified professionals can use acupuncture needles for medical procedures. This greatly reduces the risk of infection or injury. Side effects are minor and can consist of soreness, bruising, and minor bleeding at the entry site. While there are no special preparations required before beginning acupuncture treatment, it’s important to make the acupuncture specialist aware of any special medical conditions, such as bleeding disorders, if you take blood thinners, have a pacemaker, or are pregnant.
Safe, Effective Acupuncture Treatments in Orange County, CA
If the modern symptom management approach to medicine isn’t working for you, maybe it’s time to consider an alternative. For thousands of years, people all over the world have turned to acupuncture to relieve pain, restore balance and boost energy. If you live in Orange County, CA you can experience the benefits of acupuncture and TCM at Quality Acu.
Quality Acu provides safe, effective acupuncture treatments to patients in Orange County, CA. Contact us today through our website or call us at 714-532-2827 to schedule an appointment with Orange County acupuncture specialist Dr. Gregory G. Maruki.