How Does Acupuncture Treatment Work

Acupuncture is the procedure that involves inserting thin, solid, metallic needles into the skin, which are activated by gentle and particular movements of the practitioner’s hands or by electrical stimulation. Acupuncture treatment has its roots from ancient traditional Chinese medicine. The Schaumburg, IL acupuncture & Chinese medicine practitioners believe the human body contains over 2,000 acupuncture points linked by pathways or meridians. These pathways allow energy to flow through the body, responsible for overall health. A disturbance in the energy flow can cause illness. Acupuncture at specific points is thought to improve energy flow, thereby healthier living.


Acupuncture is performed with hair-thin needles. Most people report feeling only minor discomfort as the needle is inserted. The needle is inserted into a point that causes pressure or aches. The needles may be heated during the procedure, or a mild electric current is applied. Acupuncture has been reported to energize and ease some people. Incorrect needle placement can result in pain during treatment. To avoid infection, needles must be sterilized. Your practitioner will inform you of the general location of the planned treatment and whether you need to remove any clothing before the procedure. You will be given a gown, towel, or sheet to wear, and then you will lie on a padded table for the treatment.

After the procedure

Following an acupuncture treatment, some people feel relaxed, while others feel energized. Acupuncture, however, does not work for everyone. Acupuncture may not be suitable for you if your symptoms do not improve within a few weeks. Acupuncture’s benefits are sometimes difficult to quantify, but many people find it helpful in controlling various painful conditions. Several studies, however, show that some types of simulated acupuncture work just as well as real acupuncture. Acupuncture also appears to work best in people who expect it to work. Acupuncture has few side effects, so it is worth a shot if you are having trouble controlling your pain with more traditional methods.

Effects of acupuncture treatment on your body

Acupuncture points are found to improve the central nervous system. This, in turn, causes chemicals to be released into the muscles, spinal cord, and brain. These biochemical changes may promote physical and emotional well-being by stimulating the body’s natural healing abilities. Acupuncture has been shown in studies by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to be an effective treatment alone or in combination with conventional therapies for nausea caused by surgical anesthesia and cancer chemotherapy, dental pain after surgery, addiction, headaches, and other conditions.


Acupuncture has few risks if performed by a competent, certified acupuncturist who uses sterile needles. Common side effects are soreness and minor bleeding or bruising where the needles were inserted. The risk of infection is low since single-use, disposable needles are now routine. Acupuncture is not appropriate for everyone. If you do any of the following, you may be at risk of complications:

  • Suffer from a bleeding disorder. If you have a bleeding disorder or are taking blood thinners, your chances of bleeding or bruising from the needles increase.
  • You should get a pacemaker. Acupuncture that uses mild electrical pulses to stimulate the needles can interfere with the operation of a pacemaker.
  • Are expecting a child. Some forms of acupuncture are thought to stimulate labor, leading to premature labor.

Call Exhale Sinus and Facial Pain Center or schedule your appointment online if you are ready to undergo acupuncture treatment.