Acupuncture for Pain Management

Acute and Chronic Conditions

Acupuncture has been proven time and time again to be one of THE most effective, efficient and affordable forms of pain relief. In recent studies it has been found that acupuncture provides long-term pain relief along with improvements in physical activity levels, quality of sleep and diminished use of pain medication.

But how does it work? Acupuncture may help relieve chronic pain by stimulating nerves located in muscles and other tissues, which leads to release of endorphins and other neurohumoral factors and changes the processing of pain in the brain and spinal cord. It may also improve muscle stiffness and joint mobility by increasing local microcirculation.

01.

Migraines & Tension Headaches

Headaches are one of the most common complaints in clinical practice, affecting about 80% of the UK. Acupuncture is now offered on the NHS for migraines (NICE) as it has been proven to be significantly better than no treatment/basic care for managing  migraine, and appears to be at least as effective as prophylactic drug therapy, with no contraindications or unpleasant side effects. NICE concludes that acupuncture is the only proven method to prevent tension-type headaches and migraine and that doctors should prescribe a course of up to ten sessions over 5–8 weeks.

As well as prevention it may also be used to alleviate symptoms in acute attacks. New evidence also shows that acupuncture can increase coping mechanisms as well as relieve the primary migraine symptoms.

02.

Musculoskeletal pain & post operative pain

Post Operative Pain

Pain after surgery is common, often severe and largely unnecessary. Effective relief of post-operative pain is vital, and not just for humanitarian reasons. Such pain probably prolongs hospital stay, as it can affect all organ systems. Not only treating it result in earlier discharge from hospital, but it may also reduce the onset of chronic pain syndromes. Recent studies have found acupuncture and electro-acupuncture to reduce post-operative pain, the use of pain medications, and post-operative nausea and vomiting.

Musculoskeletal Pain

Back pain can affect anyone at any age and most people will suffer from it at some point in their lives. It is the UK’s leading cause of disability and one of the main reasons for work-related sickness absence. Acupuncture is now available on the NHS for back pain as it has been found to be particularly useful as an adjunct to conventional care, for patients with more severe symptoms and for those wishing to avoid conventional medication. Acupuncture is now limited to just treating back pain though and may offer relief from other pain conditions. Find out more here.

Sciatica // Dental Pain // Neck Pain // Facial Pain // Neuropathic Pain // Osteoarthritis // Palliative Care // Puerperium // Raynauds Syndrome // Rheumatoid Arthritis // Tennis Elbow

03.

Sports Injuries & Performance

With Sheffield being the outdoor capital of the UK, it is not surprising that sprains, strains and arthritic conditions from cold weather and over-use are so common.

The aim of Acupuncture is to relieve pain, control inflammation and accelerate repair, improving muscle stiffness and joint mobility. Also restoring muscle function and recovery of muscle power. It can often provide relief from: tendinopathy, knee ligament injuries, rotator cuff injuries, frozen shoulder, tennis and golfer’s elbow, shin splints, stress fractures, hamstring injuries and plantar fasciitis.

Acupuncture may give you the “slight edge” in sports performance. My aim is to get you back into action, performing at the top of your game.

04.

Gynae & Urological Pain

PMT, period pains, endometriosis or PCOS, fertility, pregnancy and menopause are all manifestations of the female experience and a system of medicine such as acupuncture can treat at root level rather than masking the symptoms with medication, thus re-establishing hormonal balance in the woman’s cycle. It can be life changing for some women to be able to reduce or eliminate symptoms genealogical pain from their life, enabling them to feel much more at ease throughout their monthly cycle.

Painful periods are addressed with the stimulation of acupuncture points which strongly move the uterine blood flow, this can help to relax the uterus reducing the contractions which cause painful cramps as well as clearing away old blood. Overtime, many women report that their menstrual blood changes from a darker red to a brighter colour with a regular and balanced flow.

Although acupuncture cannot replace western medicine when it comes to bacterial infections, it works in conjunction with your prescription to help address the symptoms and reduce any side effects from the medication. A great example of this is cystitis. Acupuncture works in harmony with antibiotics to treat the infection, address the underlying cause of the illness and help manage the pain during its acute phase.

Cystitis // Child Birth // Endometriosis // Painful Periods // Female Fertility // Infertility ART // Menopausal Symptoms // PCOS // PMT // Urinary Incontinence

05.

Digestive Pain

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) describes a collection of symptoms, commonly including chronic abdominal pain, bloating, flatulence and altered bowel habits. It is a functional disorder of the intestines, occurring in the absence of visible structural abnormality. It is particularly prevalent now with our grab and go mentality towards food. Quick and easy food products combined with a state of stress or eating in a hurry can often contribute towards symptoms of IBS.

Acupuncture may help in regulating symptoms of IBS by reducing the stress response in the body that causes the colon to spasm, resulting in abdominal discomfort. In people with IBS, the colon can be oversensitive to the smallest amount of conflict or stress. Acupuncture helps to stimulate the ‘rest and digest’ response and therefore reduce painful cramps.

There is consistent evidence that a course of acupuncture improves IBS symptoms and general wellbeing. Acupuncture can also be safely and effectively combined with Western medicine, and other treatments such as relaxation exercises, herbal medicine and psychotherapy to provide long-term relief by addressing the symptoms and the cause of the condition.

When it comes to digestive health, I make dietary recommendations and nutrition suggestions in each treatment to also help with the presenting symptoms and reduce inflammation.

IBS // Chron’s Disease // Diverticular Disease // Colitis // Nausea & Vomiting