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History of Acupuncture

Acupuncture has been a system of health care in China and other Eastern countries for more than 3000 years. It is used to treat many different types of conditions and illnesses, both physical and emotional.

Acupuncture treats the whole person rather than just the symptoms presented and in doing so aims to improve overall wellbeing as well as providing a lasting solution to the problem. Many people come with a specific condition but go on to find that they feel better in themselves generally.

Theory of Yin and Yang

Acu3From its early beginnings one of the most important concepts of Chinese medicine is that of natural balance. From this idea of balance arises the fundamental theory of yin and yang. According to this theory, life takes place in the alternating rhythm of yin and yang.

Day gives way to night, night to day; a time of light and activity (Yang) is followed by darkness and rest (Yin). Flowers open and close, the moon waxes and wanes, the tides come in and go out; we wake and sleep, breathe in, breathe out. Yin/Yang is a constant, continual flow through which everything is expressed on the one hand and recharged on the other. They are an inseparable couple. Their proper relationship is health; a disturbance in this relationship is disease.

The well-known symbol of the yin-yang further demonstrates that nothing is pure Yin or pure Yang; black and white embrace and intertwine in perfect symmetry, each side containing a small seed of its opposite. The conclusion drawn from this theory is that good health entails the balance and harmony of all that is yin and all that is yang within the body.

Theory of Qi

When such a proper balance of forces exists, the body has achieved a healthy circulation of the life force Qi (roughly pronounced "chee"). In Chinese medicine it is theorised that the human body, as well as every other living thing, has a natural flow of Qi throughout it. Qi is said to travel the body along channels called "meridians," of which there are fourteen. Qi flows constantly up and down these pathways, and when the flow of Qi is insufficient, unbalanced, or interrupted, yin and yang become unbalanced, and illness may occur.

Modern Day Acupuncture

Thousands of years of observing the cause and effect of using and refining these techniques of stimulating specific areas of the body to give therapeutic affect have survived into the 21st century. The Chinese have continued to embrace acupuncture as a major plank to their public health program such as witnessed with the training of Bare Foot Doctors to provide low cost acceptable medical care to the millions of Chinese in rural China. With the opening up of China to the western world the "art of acupuncture" has been subjected to intense western scientific scrutiny. Research demonstrated that acupuncture relieved pain in rats and rabbits, thus dispelling any contention that acupuncture was purely a placebo effect on humans.

Acupuncture's popularity since the 1990's can be seen as part of the emerging move world wide towards more natural, holistic healing methods.

Acupuncture has virtually no side effects and is proven to help with many conditions which are often resistant to conventional forms of therapy.

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