What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture involves the insertion of very specific, thin needles into specific points in the body (just under the skin) to cause desired healing effects. Needles (dry needling), pressure alone (acupressure), and Vitamin B12 injections into acupuncture points are all methods of acupuncture.
How does acupuncture work?
There are many theories about how acupuncture works, and experimental evidence shows that acupuncture stimulates many pain–nerve systems within the body, causing the release of endorphins and neurotransmitters such as serotonin as well as local effects.
What conditions can be treated with acupuncture?
There are many conditions that can be helped with acupuncture. Acupuncture is most often used in the treatment of pain and stiffness due to arthritis, chronic disc problems, hip dysplasia, and joint injuries. It can also be very helpful in the treatment of muscle pain or spasms. Acupuncture can be helpful in the general care of elderly pets, to keep them feeling as well and energetic as possible. Other conditions are respiratory problems, intestinal problems, some neurologic diseases, or general internal organ issues. All of these conditions do best when a combination of therapies including the general treatments recommended by our veterinarians.
Does acupuncture hurt?
No. Most people find that if they feel anything, it's a momentary slight "pinch" and animals seem to have similar reactions. Many people don't feel the acupuncture needles being inserted at all. They are as fine as one of your hairs, so they can slide in with little or no sensation. People report feelings such as a mild, dull, distending, heavy feeling around one or more of the needles or sensations moving along a limb. Many dogs fall asleep or become very relaxed once the needles are placed. Directly after a treatment, some animals are energized and very lively; others are sleepy and tired for several hours. Dogs (and people) can be a little bit sore during the first 24-48 hours after an acupuncture treatment, as you might be after a good deep tissue massage, but then often improve over the next few days.
Is acupuncture safe?
Yes. There are very few negative side effects of acupuncture itself and the needles we use are sterile and disposable. However, it is very important to know what you are treating with acupuncture, as there are many conditions that would be best treated with acupuncture