Acupuncture is Effective Against Osteoarthritis
21 Jan 2016
Osteoarthritis is a very common degenerative disease affecting the joints, which can have a considerable impact on the life of a person suffering from it. It usually causes chronic pain as well as stiffness that adversely affects the patient’s mobility, their ability of doing normal day-to-day activities, their mood and overall quality of their life. Osteoarthritis is typically characterised by degeneration of a particular cartilage which cushions the joints. The degeneration triggers swelling, inflammation and serious alterations in the bone.
Treatments for Curing Osteoarthritis
Among the different types of treatments that are currently available for curing osteoarthritis, the most common ones include topical pain relievers, NSAIDS, hyaluronan injections, DMARDS and gout drugs. However, many of these medicines can have one or more side-effects on long term usage. But there is another kind of remedy which can not only reduce the osteoarthritic pain, but also provide lasting relief from the other associated symptoms. That remedy is none other than the holistic and completely natural therapeutic treatment of acupuncture.
Acupuncture and Osteoarthritis
Acupuncture is one of the ancient modalities of Traditional Chinese Medicine that involves insertion of fine needles at various points (known as acupoints) on one’s body. Different acupoints correspond to different organ systems in the body, and are used as per the condition which needs to be treated. In the modern times, acupuncture has become a very commonly used medical procedure in many countries, including Australia.
Although most ailments that are treated with acupuncture generally require insertion of needles only at specific points, acupuncture for osteoarthritis involves stimulation of points situated all over the patient’s body. During a session, the patient may initially experience a little bit of discomfort. Once the needles have been inserted, however, they generally talk about feeling deep relaxation. A single session generally lasts for around half an hour, and the patient may require one or more sessions every week. Duration of the treatment would depend on the sufferer as well as their symptoms.
Several studies have shown that osteoarthritis sufferers experience less pain and increased mobility after being treated with acupuncture. This is because the treatment stimulates production of endorphins inside their body, which act as natural painkillers. These chemicals not only help in fighting the pain, but also decrease inflammation and swelling.
Acupuncturists who deal with osteoarthritis management often use acupuncture in conjunction with various other natural treatments such as glucosamine supplements, dietary therapy and water therapy. They may even prescribe certain forms of exercise for increasing effectiveness of the overall treatment.