Why does acupuncture work, and why is it so good for pain relief?

By Tim Barrett and Dave Chandraratnam

A vast amount of pain in the body is a result of tight muscles. When muscles tighten, they compress the blood and lymphatic vessels that pass through that area, which is a bit like parking your car on your garden hose – instead of getting a good flow, you only get a trickle.

This trickle builds up carbon dioxide and lactic acid and creates a lack of oxygen – all of which will register in your brain as pain!

The reason the muscle is tight is that a stimulus is being generated somewhere in your brain going down the spinal cord to that muscle via the nerves telling that muscle to switch on.

When we do acupuncture and especially electro-acupuncture, we are putting extra stimulus into that area which gets communicated back up the nervous system to the brain. The brain responds to this by thinking, “Whoa, too much stimulation!” It dials down how much internally generated stimulus is going down to that part of the body. So, when we turn off the electro and take the needles out, the brain is sending less internally generated stimulus down to that area so the muscle can relax properly.

Whilst this is not the whole story – there are endorphins (the body’s natural pain killers) and cortisol (the body’s natural anti-inflammatory agent) released as well as changes to fasciae and blood flow – it is a simple way to understand part of the effect acupuncture has on the body and brain.

To book in with either Dave or Tim to be treated for your pain, visit www.ccbodymechanics.com.au or call us on 4325 5448.

Acupuncture can assist with pain from a variety of causes.