Acupuncture vs. Physical Therapy

Acupuncture vs. Physical Therapy

 

When it comes to injuries, it’s very important to realize that first and foremost, before you self-assess your problem, you must go to a doctor. Only a medical doctor can determine what sort of injury you’re suffering from. Failure to seek proper medical treatment could lead to long-term issues for yourself and those who care about you. Now that said, it’s important to understand that there are alternatives to traditional medicine that can make a big positive difference in your life. While plenty of people are sometimes critical of these methods, it’s good to know that they will not only have a genuine impact on your life for the long term, but you’ll also be able to function much better in comparison to individuals that don’t seek these treatments.

 

Without a doubt, two of the best treatments people seek when they have injuries include acupuncture and physical therapy. While they both provide different kinds of solutions, they can have a major impact on how someone feels for the long haul. But it’s important to know that when it comes to solutions, you must know some treatments are better than others, and when juxtaposing these two solutions, there is an objective difference between both.

 

Acupuncture

 

Acupuncture in theory is supposed to be an ancient Chinese healing art that involves sticking needles in precise points on the body to stimulate a healing/hormonal response depending on the ailment someone is suffering from. It is not as mainstream as physical therapy, but many believe it is superior.

 

If someone has a serious injury, then it’s very important to realize that to help people, they must understand the biomechanics of the body before going any further. This is essential to realize, and until people do, then they are going to have a lot of problems. Some will do better with physical therapy, others acupuncture. Acupuncture has not been around for thousand of years for no reason.

 

Physical Therapy

 

Physical therapy is the science of taking an injury and correctly rehabilitating it through repetitive exercise and treatments. Being a PT (physical therapist) is unique from being a doctor or acupuncturist because it’s centered around strengthening certain parts of the body that are suffering from issues that otherwise would require tremendous improvement. There are so many people that require tremendous assistance that PTs can have a tremendous impact on them in a positive way. Unlike acupuncturists, PTs and physical therapy has tremendous science and support behind it, making it a phenomenal way to help people that are having pain or issues. It’s absolutely a long-term option to get into better health.

 

Ultimately though, the decision as to which course of treatment to pursue is a decision that should be made between you and your doctor.

 

Stress-Related Addiction May Be Treated with Acupuncture or Massage

Stress-Related Addiction May Be Treated with Acupuncture or Massage

There are a lot of reasons why the average person begins to feel stressed out at any given moment. In today’s world it isn’t difficult to get overwhelmed or feel anxiety, or to succumb to unhealthy temptations in an effort to control those emotions. Between the lure of drugs and/or alcohol and the disguised promise of pharmaceuticals, it can be a daunting task to find any sort of effective treatment for tension (or for the addiction that is a result of it for that matter). Because of the mounting risks associated with drug addiction and stress, many people are turning to more holistic methods of healing relaxation.
In fact, according to a study performed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (part of the National Institutes of Health), too much stress is actually a leading cause for several health-related conditions. Research shows how those who suffer from anxiety or depression are at a serious risk of developing problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, stomach ulcers, eating disorders, and even drug addiction. Moreover, addicts who are hooked on drugs due to stress are more likely to relapse during treatment than those who are addicted for some other reason. This paints the picture as to why so many people are looking for ways to permanently reduce their stress levels, or at least naturally manage it somehow.

The Stress and Addiction Connection

Thanks to recent studies, we now know that there is a clear connection between stress levels and a person’s likelihood to become a drug addict. Put simply, stress makes a person vulnerable to addiction, and even to eventual relapse if they choose to get help. The feelings associated with high levels of stress or anxiety actually trigger the brain to seek out a means of treatment. Often this includes self-medicating with the use of drugs or alcohol. Research shows that stress literally reinstates drug-seeking behavior in mammals – and as you know, we fit into that group.
Being stressed out a lot should never be an excuse for abusing drugs or alcohol. Still, the mere fact that elevated stress levels can lead to eventual drug addiction due to our fundamental makeup is quite thought-provoking.  Stress can be a serious cause of drinking, and the drinking leads to the poor decision, like getting behind the wheel. This means that human beings have a responsibility to manage their stress in the most constructive way possible. It demonstrates our ability to recognize problems and work through them, but drug addiction is a hallmark of apathy. Instead of succumbing to the temptation of hiding, perhaps you could find out what is truly happening inside you. That way you can develop the best approach to managing your stress – one that does not involve the abuse of drugs.

Understanding Why Stress Is so Detrimental

There is good stress and bad stress. Good stress makes you more productive, intuitive, and creative. Bad stress can lead to chronic health problems, social issues, and self-medicating. Bad stress can also wreak havoc on the body if it is not managed correctly, and especially if it is treated by abusing drugs or alcohol. There are few things sadder than a poor stressed-out soul who has been lost to addiction because no viable option was discovered.
You are not alone if you feel high levels of stress or the urge to use drugs because of it. The National Institute of Mental Health stated in a recent study that as much as 90% of modern doctor’s visits are scheduled due to stress-related ailments. Apparently, more needs to be done by today’s patient to manage stress when the doctor is away. In fact, the Mayo Clinic reported just last year that over 43% of adults in America suffer from some sort of adverse side effect(s) due to severe or chronic stress, with many of them ultimately becoming drug addicts.

Understanding What Addiction Does to the Body

Stress is already detrimental to a person’s health, causing such problems as headache, acne, diabetes, asthma, and arthritis. Mix in a drug or alcohol addiction and you have quite the lethal cocktail. While a lot of people become addicts because they are looking for a quick and efficient way to relax, most of the substances used to do this actually create the opposite effect (especially if they are abused). Over time, this bad habit can translate into serious health problems or can cause issues with the inability to properly manage bodily functions, regulate mood, recognize spatial orientation, and improve cognitive awareness.
Drug addiction leaves the body and mind wanting more – either more drugs or more solutions. Since taking more drugs or drinking more alcohol tends to just make matters worse, health experts often recommend more natural remedies. Aside from simple abstinence or mindfulness, there are a couple viable options for those who are serious enough about their stress or addiction to try some treatment alternatives, namely massage and/or acupuncture.

How Acupuncture and/or Massage Can Correct the Effects of Stress and Addiction

For thousands of years, acupuncture has been used by people from all walks of life in an effort to relieve stress, balance hormones, improve mood, and promote feelings of relaxation. Ancient Chinese developers of this discipline initially theorized that the body contained certain nerve centers which, when stimulated, caused certain positive effects. While it is not yet medically nor scientifically understood exactly why acupuncture works, there is no denying its effectiveness or its staying power in today’s holistic health fields.
Acupuncture, or even simple massage, can create a sense of ease and relaxation where there was none before. It can rewire your thought process and keep you from taking drugs or relapsing after an addiction recovery. In fact, it wasn’t too long ago that Fox News was running a special segment about the stress-relieving properties of acupuncture and massage, and nothing has changed. Both methods are highly effective for stress management and reduction, which in turn can ultimately render a person much less susceptible to developing a drug or alcohol addiction. Just be sure to speak with a doctor or professional acupuncturist before you begin, especially if you are unsure about anything.

Acupuncture Explained

Acupuncture – What Is It?

For centuries people have been trying out all sorts of different methods so that they can achieve optimal body functions. While modern Eastern medicine often uses various pharmaceuticals in an attempt to get that job done, many ancient cultures have experimented with success to find alternative forms of medicine and healing. One of the most popular methods for such things, reaching back from thousands of years ago to be embraced by millions of people today, is known as acupuncture.

Acupuncture Points
Acupuncture Basics

Acupuncture is a lot more relaxing and gratifying than the description sounds. Although it involves using very tiny needles and having them inserted into various parts of the body by a professional acupuncturist, it can be quite rejuvenating when done correctly. The basic gist is for the “patient” to have a fully customized experience, with each needle being placed at varying depths and on very specific nerve endings. While modern medicine cannot quite explain how or why acupuncture works, there are noticeable benefits to having it done which cannot be denied.
When acupuncture is performed correctly, sterilized needles are always used and the environment in which the procedure is done is a calming one. Unlike typical healing techniques, acupuncture has no real anatomical proof that it works. Regardless of that fact, people from all walks of life have been using this holistic brand of treatment since long ago.

Exploring the Rich History of an Ancient Art-form

While you might be able to get acupuncture at your local spa these days, there was a time when it was considered a holy or noble art form. As most historians agree, acupuncture originated in China a few thousand years ago. This rich tradition, which hinges on the Chinese theory of chakras, energy meridians, and physical lay lines, has since been widely accepted by many other cultures from around the world as a viable means of healing and relaxation.
In fact, the use of acupuncture can be seen as far back as several hundred years ago in places such as Eastern Europe, India, and Africa. Once the twentieth century rolled around and news of practices from far off lands spread more rapidly, acupuncture began planting its roots in the United States and Canada. Now, modern people from all over the globe are becoming more curious about the pros and cons of this rich, ancient form of physical healing.

Understanding the Benefits

As stated, experts are still not quite sure how acupuncture works. In fact, today’s medical professionals remain in debate about whether or not such energy medians even exist in the body, as theorized by the ancient Chinese developers of acupuncture. Despite the controversy, those who undergo acupuncture are typically happy with the positive physical and mental side effects resulting from a single treatment. Acupuncture actually offers several amazing benefits to a person’s overall health, regardless of its lack of scientific backing for those claims.
Interestingly, a well-performed acupuncture procedure can render a person completely relaxed, free of pain, less nausea, and/or more easily able to deal with the side effects of other medications or treatments (namely chemotherapy). In fact, it is often suggested by modern physicians that certain patients try acupuncture as an effective supplement to their regular treatment plan, and it can often be found as a tool for those suffering from an addiction as well. It can also help with treatment for any type of  an auto accident. Since there are very few negative side effects associated with acupuncture, it is widely considered a safe and holistic approach to improving one’s health and quality of life.

Considering the Drawbacks

Favorably, there are very few drawbacks to having acupuncture, unless of course you are someone who only uses scientifically-backed techniques. Having such an effective means of natural healing is quite an advantage to some, but other people find qualms in the way the overall procedure is performed. Because acupuncture uses needles, those patients might find that the entire process is off-putting and not relaxing. Professional acupuncturists are usually quite informative about the best ways to overcome this moderate concerns.
In addition to being a procedure that takes some getting used to, slight local irritation may also occur on those who have extra sensitive skin types. However, a licensed acupuncturist will use clean equipment and might even offer you topical products that help fight that side effect. Other than those few minor drawbacks, professional acupuncture is considered to be as harmless as it is effective.

Common Criticisms

While considering acupuncture, you might run into some people who are skeptical about it. This is quite common when dealing with a procedure that is both unfamiliar and unlike anything else. A lot of people are afraid to get acupuncture because they believe that it will hurt. This is simply not the case. In fact, the standard needles used in acupuncture are so small that they can hardly be felt by the patient at all. On top of that, a professional acupuncturist will always know how to place the needles in strategic places which do not cause any pain or discomfort, but instead provide the opposite effect.
In some places, getting acupuncture can be relatively expensive. However, due to the influx in popularity over the last few decades, it is now possible to find acupuncture at a very reasonable price if you go through the right source. The most common criticism about the cost of acupuncture is centered on the speculation that it simply will not work and will be a waste of funds. Despite the debate, those who have experienced acupuncture typically claim that it was well worth the money.

The Bigger Picture

While there are plenty of healing and treatment options out there, one can hardly argue that the existence and continued practice of acupuncture for thousands of years speaks volumes about its effectiveness. Still, in order to be safe and well-informed, it might be a good idea for you to consult with your doctor before experiencing acupuncture. When you do decide to go for it, be sure you opt for a professional acupuncturist to perform the procedure.