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Traditional Chinese Treatment for Headache Pain : Acupuncture and Headache Pain

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There are times when a person must open their minds to treatment that they might not otherwise consider. Headache sufferers can spend so much of their lives in pain that if there were something that could help them, and not be simply increasing their medication, that they should look seriously into it. This should include trying acupuncture.

The Asian cultures have used this ancient art of pain relief for over three thousand years. But westerners have feared this odd treatment not understanding why someone would voluntarily put lots of thin needles into their bodies. Interestingly this has been changing a lot over the last few decades, gaining acceptance, especially with the recent clinical studies of the past decade the results of which have proved that acupuncture can help with some of the worst headache pain. These recent studies, conducted in Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States, have shown marked improvement for those who suffer from cluster headaches, migraines, tension and chronic daily headaches.
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The question that always arises is what does acupuncture do and how does it do it. It works like this; the Chinese culture teaches that there is a life force that flows through all of us. They call it Qi, they pronounce it chee, and it is this energy in oneís body that must be kept flowing properly. It must be able to pass through all the organs of ones body. If the flow is interrupted in some way, causing an unbalancing of the body, they believe that this will cause illness. Acupuncture is used to realign this energy by stimulating certain spots that can affect the biochemical and physical operation of the human body.

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When acupuncture is used for headaches the thin needles will usually be placed on the legs, arms and shoulders for best results. Most people do not feel the needles as they penetrate the skin; sometimes a little pinprick is felt. Numerous studies have shown a high rate of success with this method. When it came to working with patients who had tension headaches nearly fifty percent had as many as seven less headaches than usual over a period of four weeks. When tried with patients who suffered from cluster headaches, claimed to be the worst of headache pain imaginable, acupuncture either reduced the frequency or the severity allowing many to decrease or eliminate prescribed medications.

The average treatment lasts between five minutes and a half an hour. The patient returns weekly once or twice depending on treatment required. Only rarely are there side effects. But when they occur they are limited to a little bit of dizziness or some bruising of the spots where the needles were inserted.

Some studies have tried to use the needles only in the scalp for treating headache pain. Surprisingly this has had very impressive results with ninety eight percent of patients in this study did not have headaches, or only the very occasional mild headache, for six months after the study was completed.
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