Alternative Acupuncture Techniques
While most widely known for its use of needles as fine as human hair, acupuncture is not restricted to needling to achieve its therapeutic goals. There are in fact two examples of acupuncture practices that are do not involve the invasive insertion of needles, and these are discussed and explored in this article.
Moxibustion is an alternative method of stimulating acupuncture points, specific parts of the body which acupuncture aims to stimulate to restore health. Each acupuncture point is associated with a channel responsible for the transport of Qi, a life energy which the ancient Chinese believed to be essential to good health. Needling is the usual method by which these points are stimulated, however, in some instances an acupuncturist may opt to burn a herb called moxa instead.
Moxa is also known by its Latin name Artemis vulgaris or the more colloquial term Mugwort. The herb is processed prior to burning, and this involves grinding moxa leaves to form a compacted shape or fine wool which can easily be burned.
Moxibustion is the practice of burning the herb about 1 cm away from an acupuncture point. In doing so, an acupuncturist hopes to alleviate symptoms affecting the part of the body represented by that specific acupuncture point .
Moxibustion can also be carried out indirectly by some practitioners. IN these cases, a piece of garlic or ginger is placed on top of a specific acupuncture point. A small piece of moxa wool is then placed on top of this and burnt.
This practice can also be formed using a needle, where a small piece of moxa wool is placed on top of a needle and burnt, allowing its heat to travel through the needle and into the acupuncture point in question.
These techniques are used to relieve abdominal pain shock, arthritis, bronchitis, and in some cases to help turn a baby in breech. Babies need to be in a particular, head down position (referred to medically as the cephalic presentation) to facilitate a safe and healthy birth. Where babies aren’t in this position, they are described as being in breech (usually with their feet or their bum facing downwards rather than their head). Breech births present a number of risks to both mother and child, not the least of which is the risk of injury and prolonged labour.
There are a number of different methods of turning a baby in breech, one of which relies on moxibustion. Moxibustion should only be used if approved by your medical care team (your midwife and doctor), and in support of your existing medical care.
Cupping is another acupunctural discipline that doesn’t necessarily make use of needles to achieve its goals. The treatment gets its name from the use of cups to stimulate blood flow, and through that, improve healing.
A cup is placed on top of an acupuncture point, and suction is generated through either the application of heat or a pump. Heat is the traditional method of stimulating the cupping process, and what happens is that once the air within the cup has become warm enough, and the rim of the cup then placed on a patient’s skin, an airtight seal is formed as the air cools and contracts to create a vacuum. The force of the vacuum pulls on both the skin and its underlying structures, drawing blood to the area and effectively stimulating blood flow.
- Cancer, Acupuncture & Costs of Treatment
- Acupuncture for anxiety
- Shonishin acupuncture
- Inducing labour with acupuncture
- Safety of acupuncture to induce labour
- Acupuncture & fear of needles
- Acupuncture to treat Crohn's Disease
- Acupuncture to treat shoulder pain
- Acupuncture to manage hypertension
- Acupuncture to treat obesity
- Acupuncture for stroke patients
- Acupuncture to treat tennis elbow
- ACUPUNCTURE GUIDE
- Where does acupuncture come from?
- How does acupuncture work?
- What proof is there that acupuncture works?
- How is acupuncture regulated in the UK?
- Who are the British Acupuncture Council?
- Risks and side effects of acupuncture
- Who can't have acupuncture?
- Is Acupuncture Safe?
- Infection risk with acupuncture
- Is acupuncture safe during pregnancy?
- Benefits of acupuncture in pregnancy
- What is an acupuncture needle?
- Acupuncture Needles
- Are acupuncture needles safe?
- How deep are acupuncture needles applied?
- How long are acupuncture needles left in?
- Types of acupuncture needle
- Three-edged acupuncture needle
- Acupuncture press needle
- Acupuncture points
- Types of acupuncture
- Alternative Acupuncture Techniques
- Acupuncture & Moxibustion
- Sham acupuncture
- Acupressure alternative to acupuncture
- What is acupressure used for?
- Techniques used during acupressure treatments
- Safety of acupressure
- Acupunctural cupping
- Is cupping dangerous or painful?
- Is electroacupuncture safe?
- Opinions about acupuncture
- Scientifically proving the effectiveness of acupuncture
- What is GERAC?
- What conditions can acupuncture be used to treat?
- Who practices acupuncture in the UK?
- Can I get acupuncture on the NHS?
- What is ear (auricular) acupuncture?
- Can acupuncture help manage pain?
- Acupuncture for myofascial pain syndrome
- Acupuncture & fibromyalgia
- Acupuncture & carpal tunnel syndrome
- Acupuncture & rheumatoid arthritis
- Acupuncture & muscle spasms
- Acupuncture & tinnitus
- Acupuncture for sciatica
- Acupuncture for migraines
- Acupuncture for cancer patients
- Acupuncture & pain control for cancer patients
- Acupuncture to treat nausea and vomiting because of cancer treatments
- Acupuncture to treat hot flushes experienced by cancer patients
- Acupuncture to treat dry mouth in cancer patients
- Acupuncture to treat fatigue in cancer patients
- Acupuncture to treat breathlessness in cancer patients
- Acupuncture to treat neuropathy in cancer patients
- When can and when can't acupuncture be used to help cancer patients?
- Colonic Irrigation
- Cosmetic Surgery
- Cosmetic Treatments
- Dental Treatments
- Fertility Treatment
- Hair Transplants
- Harley Street
- Hearing Aids
- Laser Eye Surgery
- Laser Hair Removal
- Medical Centres & GPs
- Private Blood Tests
- Private Health Insurance
- Sleep Disorders
- Smoking & E-Cigarettes
- Sports Medicine
- STD's & STI's
(Sexually Transmitted Diseases)
- Tattoo Removal
- Vasectomy Reversal
- Weight Loss Surgery
- Glossary A-Z