As the summer sports become subdued with inclement weather, it is the time to heal those sports injuries without the constant re-aggravation. Tennis elbow (shoulder or knees too), low back pain, ankle weakness or pain, knee pain, neck pain, etc. are all successfully treated with acupuncture.
Acupuncturists manage sports injuries differently than conventional medicine does. We use the body’s inherent healing abilities to do the work, rather than relying on medications to cover the pain. In chronic injuries, we ask WHY the body isn’t healing it. We ask what systems that are involved in the healing process aren’t doing their job. We ask if the nutritional necessities for healing to occur are present, and if there is anything in the diet or lifestyle hampering the body’s ability to heal. We use several modalities to enhance the body’s ability to heal itself.
Using hair-like acupuncture needles in “acu-points”, we are able to stimulate the release of hormones and substances to reduce pain, inflammation, swelling and muscle spasms. We can stimulate healing to occur, generally faster than it would on its own.
Herbal supplements are generally used to help acupuncture synergistically to control inflammation and tissue healing. Massage also has a synergistic effect with acupuncture to promote healing.
Another modality applied to the acupuncture needles is electro-stimulation. This is different from TENS or galvanic stimulation. Using micro-currents applied directly to the needle, there is definite chemical response that not only has been shown to initiate and/or speed recovery, but also reduces disc degeneration causing chronic low back pain. According to “Acupuncture Biochemical Discovery For Low Back Pain & Discs” quoted in Healthcare Medicine Institute’s HealthCMI, “MMP-13 is involved in healthy embryonic development but is also involved in human carcinoma, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis development. Acupuncture successfully downregulated abnormally high levels of MMP-13 caused by disc compression. TIMP-1 is a natural inhibitor of MMPs including MMP-13. TIMP-1 also promotes cellular proliferation and has anti-apoptotic functions. Acupuncture successfully upregulated TIMP-1 that had been suppressed by disc compression.” And “Researchers successfully measured scientifically repeatable chemical responses to acupuncture that suppress[ed] intervertebral disc degeneration.”
Chronic pain repeatedly interferes with daily life, including work performance and life-activity enjoyment. Many people suffer needlessly, when they really don’t have to. Acupuncture is a time-tested, repeatedly proven answer to chronic pain, whether injury-induced or just generally health-related.
Many people also want to avoid the use of taking medicines continually to reduce their pain, but believe it is the only answer. As many wise “alternative medicine” advocates and professionals know, there are other ways to reduce pain and inflammation and support or stimulate healing that are quite effective. They know that there are remedies out there that don’t involve drugs or surgery that are very effective in healing a wide range of challenges that cause pain. Acupuncture is one of the best. The bottom line is, you don’t have to suffer!
©2014 Holly A. Carling, O.M.D., L.Ac., Ph.D.