Located in Fitzrovia   |   Appointments from 9am - 8pm Monday - Saturday

Traditional and Medical Acupuncture at Osteon

At Osteon we offer extensive treatments in both Traditional Chinese Acupuncture (TCM) and in Medical Acupuncture to all our patients.

Our therapists have years of experience in using these highly effective techniques, and if that wasn’t enough reassurance, both our clinic directors Jimmy Michael and Giles Gyer are both experienced lecturers in Medical Acupuncture training, and regularly teach Physiotherapists, Osteopaths and even Doctors these very techniques.


So what is (TCM) Traditional Chinese Acupuncture?

Traditional Chinese AcupunctureTCM techniques go back as far as 2000 years ago, and traditional acupuncturists believe that the underlying principle of treatment is that illness and pain occur when the body's "Qi", or vital energy, cannot flow freely.

This can be due to a variety of factors such as emotional and physical stress, poor diet, infection or injury is just a few.

By inserting ultra-fine sterile needles into specific acupuncture points, a traditional acupuncturist seeks to re-establish the free flow of "Qi" to restore balance and trigger the body's natural healing response.

What is Medical Acupuncture?

Medical AcupunctureMedical Acupuncture is a treatment which can relieve symptoms of some physical and psychological conditions and may encourage the patient's body to heal and repair itself, if it is able to do so.

Acupuncture stimulates the nerves in skin and muscle, and can produce a variety of effects. We know that it increases the body's release of natural painkillers - endorphin and serotonin - in the pain pathways of both the spinal cord and the brain. This modifies the way pain signals are received.

But acupuncture does much more than reduce pain, and has a beneficial effect on health. Patients often notice an improved sense of wellbeing after treatment.

Modern research shows that acupuncture can affect most of the body's systems - the nervous system, muscle tone, hormone outputs, circulation, antibody production and allergic responses, as well as the respiratory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems.


What happens during a typical treatment?

The Traditional Response
During a typical acupuncture session, many practitioners perform needle manipulation in order to achieve the 'de qi' response. 'De qi' is believed to be essential to the therapeutic effectiveness of acupuncture, and is often used as a signal to acupuncturists that the proper amount of needle stimulation is being performed.

When 'de qi' occurs, patients usually feel an aching or heavy sensation in the area surrounding the acupuncture needle. The practitioner, meanwhile, perceives a sensation often referred to as "needle grasp". During needle grasp, the acupuncturist feels increased resistance to continued needle manipulation. The phenomenon can be subtle or quite strong; in some instances, a patient's skin may actually lift up, or "tent," in response to a grasped acupuncture needle being removed.

The role of needle manipulation in obtaining therapeutic effects, and the significance of needle grasp to 'de qi', are two features of acupuncture that have remained largely unexplored.

The Western Response
Needling or pulsing of a myofascial trigger point will elicit a local twitch response, which is an involuntary spinal cord reflex in which the muscle fibers in the taut band of muscle contract. The local twitch response indicates the proper placement of the needle in a trigger point. Needling that elicits LTRs improves treatment outcomes, and may work by activating endogenous opioids, increase local blood flow allowing for the removal of metabolic waste and reducing muscular hypertonicity.


What is TCM and Medical Acupuncture effective for?

Acupuncture may be effective for the following conditions:

  • Pain relief for a wide range of painful conditions. It is commonly used to treat musculoskeletal pain, for example - back, shoulder, neck and leg pain;
  • It has been used successfully to treat headaches, migraines, trapped nerves, chronic muscle strains, sports injuries and various kinds of arthritic and rheumatic pain;
  • Functional bowel or bladder problems such as IBS or even mild forms of incontinence;
  • Menstrual and menopausal symptoms, eg period pains and hot flushes;
  • Allergies such as hay fever, perennial allergic rhinitis, and some types of allergic rashes such as urticaria and prickly heat;
  • Some other skin problems such as rashes and ulcers, itching, and some forms of dermatitis;
  • Sinus problems and chronic catarrh;
  • Dry mouth and eyes;
  • Help with stopping smoking.

 

Overall, acupuncture in which ever its form is very safe. We here at Osteon find its usefulness endless and we suggest that if you have never had acupuncture then give us a call or come in to the clinic at any time and ask a member of the Osteon Team.