Using acupuncture for pain is a drug-free alternative. The US Joint Commission included acupuncture among its evidence-based, non-opioid options for pain. In recent years, more than half the states in the U.S. have enacted laws limiting the amounts of opioids that medical professionals can prescribe for short-term pain. Hence patients with both acute and chronic pain, such as injury, arthritis, lower back pain and migraines, are turning to acupuncture as a safe, effective treatment option.
Many people who do not want to risk the consequences of potentially addictive pain relievers are looking to alternative treatment options to address pain. Acupuncture, a form of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has shown successful results treating acute and chronic pain.
JOINT COMMISSION RECOGNIZES ACUPUNCTURE FOR PAIN
Acupuncture’s healing benefits are also now recognized by the Joint Commission. The Joint Commission is a United States-based nonprofit tax-exempt 501(c) organization that accredits more than 21,000 US health care organizations. Addressing the rising incidence of overdose and death in the U.S. from opioid use, in 2018 the Joint Commission recommended non-opioid treatment options in pain management. The Joint Commission included acupuncture for pain management among its evidence-based, non-opioid treatment options to consider for treating pain.
Furthermore, in its report, the Joint Commission referred to the effective use of acupuncture through the Veterans Administration, as well as a recommendation by the American College of Physicians for acupuncture as a first-line treatment in lower back pain. Historically, acupuncture has not been covered by insurance. However, health care and insurance agencies across the nation are looking to reduce opioid use, and in many cases health insurance and health saving accounts now cover acupuncture treatment for pain.
HOW DOES ACUPUNCTURE WORK FOR PAIN?
Research shows that in acupuncture, manipulating the nervous system induces the release of the body’s own natural pain relief, via endorphins. In acupuncture, a trained TCM practitioner inserts very thin needles into the skin to interrupt pain signals at different points in your body. In some instances, specific areas of muscle, called trigger points, are targeted to calm spasms. The benefits of acupuncture include not only reduced pain, but increased quality of sleep, mood and overall functioning. In addition, acupuncture can reduce inflammation and improve quality of life.
Since 1981, First Health Associates has been providing exceptional health care to residents of Arlington Heights, Mt. Prospect, Schaumburg, Buffalo Grove, Rolling Meadows, Palatine, Elk Grove and Des Plaines. Our Arlington Heights acupuncturist is rated one of the best in the Chicagoland area. First Health is an integrative medicine practice that offers: Medical Care; Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine; Counseling and Behavioral Therapy; and Chiropractic Care.
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