WOMEN’S HEALTH

women's health

Chinese Medicine is particularly interested in women’s health. The classic texts that date back over thousands of years dedicate a great deal of time to the study, diagnosis and treatment of women’s health.  As a result of this long history acupuncture is hugely beneficial in treating gynaecological issues. In particular acupuncture can benefit:

  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Short/long cycles
  • Painful, heavy periods
  • Lack of periods
  • Spotting, bleeding outside period time
  • Ovulation pain
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
  • Fibroids, cysts, polyps
  • Endometriosis
  • Hormonal imbalances eg: PMS, migraine, skin eruptions, emotional issues

Fertility

Acupuncture is of great benefit in the treatment of fertility. It can support couples to conceive naturally and during the assisted reproduction process. It is a physical and emotional support during what can be an extremely challenging time. Read about how acupuncture can benefit fertility for both men and women here.

Menopause

The menopause often brings disruption and misery to a woman’s life.  It can involve one or more of a range of symptoms, which women experience to varying degrees and levels of distress. These can include night sweats and hot flushes, insomnia, anxiety, depression, fatigue, headaches, aches and pains, palpitations and genital and urinary problems.

Acupuncture supports the body to alleviate these symptoms in a natural and long-lasting way, without the need for Hormone Replacement Therapy.  For women who want to continue with HRT it is still beneficial to receive acupuncture as it will treat the hormonal imbalance that the medication is masking.

You can read more about acupuncture and the menopause in the blog post ‘Acupuncture – an effective alternative to HRT?’

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Acupuncture – an effective alternative to HRT?

women's healthThe menopause can so often be a time that brings disruption and misery to a woman’s life.  It can involve one or more of a range of symptoms, which are experienced to varying degrees and levels of distress. These can include night sweats and hot flushes, insomnia, anxiety, depression, fatigue, headaches, aches and pains, palpitations and genital and urinary problems.

It is estimated that up to 60% of women’s lives are sufficiently disrupted to warrant visiting the GP, where the standard treatment is a prescription of HRT (hormone replacement therapy). For some, this brings immediate relief with no or little side-effects and the added benefit of preventing the development of osteoporosis.

For others the side-effects of HRT (weight gain, bloating, breast tenderness, nausea, cramps, indigestion, fluid retention, headaches, mood swings, depression acne and backache) outweigh the benefits.

A woman may be reluctant to take HRT because of the associated risks of cardiovascular disease and breast cancer. Others feel uncomfortable about taking medication for such a long period of time. Some are not able to take it because of a pre-existing condition such as high blood pressure. Some have been on HRT for many years but feel unsure about stopping because of the return of the original symptoms.

So what’s the alternative…?

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what to expect

what to expect from acupuncture treatment

During the first appointment I will ask a number of questions to make a diagnosis of your main complaint and to get an overall picture of your health. I will then take a look at your tongue and feel your pulses and carry out an examination of any external physical complaints.

Follow-up sessions will involve a discussion of your progress along with the appropriate treatment for that time.

How many treatments will you need

You will feel a difference after your first acupuncture treatment but to see a permanent shift in your health you will need to complete a course of treatment.

For basic acute conditions you should see a significant improvement after 6 treatments.

For chronic and more complex cases you should see a significant improvement after 10-12 treatments.

You will need to come twice a week for the first 1-2 weeks and as long as your symptoms are improving you will need to then come once every 1-2 weeks for the remainder of the treatment plan.

After you have completed a course of treatment you will need to return for a follow-up monthly tune-up to prevent symptoms returning.

Remember some acupuncture is better than no acupuncture so even if you can’t come as often as you’d like still give it a go. However you may find that treatment is not effective or that your symptoms take a lot longer to improve if you do not come as often as outlined above.

What does it feel like

The needling sensation is often described as a dull ache, warmth or a tingling sensation. The needles used are extremely fine and treatment should not be painful. In general patients report feeling relaxed during and after treatment.

Find out how much it costs…

What is acupuncture

what is acupuncture

When people ask ‘what is acupuncture’ they may already know that it comes from China and that it treats pain. What they may not know is that today it also forms part of a rational and evidence-based system of healthcare and that over a million healthcare practitioner use it worldwide. Furthermore practitioners use acupuncture to treat a wide range of physical and mental health illness.

Acupuncture involves the insertion of fine sterile needles into acupuncture points and/or warming or massaging the points.  Glass cups may also be used to create a vacuum over areas of the skin to dispel stagnation. In these ways the acupuncturist can stimulate the body’s own healing response in a completely natural way.

What can it treat

Acupuncture is increasingly recognised as a treatment option for a wide range of conditions and consequently many health professionals are happy to recommend acupuncture to their patients.

Patients come for treatment for:

  • chronic and acute pain
  • sports injury
  • arthritis, joint pain and stiffness
  • anxiety, depression, stress and insomnia
  • digstive disorders including IBS
  • chronic fatigue syndrome and ME
  • Skin conditions such as eczema and acne
  • migraines and headaches
  • allergies
  • PMT, fibroids and endometriosis
  • menopausal symptoms
  • infertility
  • pregnancy and post-natal support
  • Urogenital problems
  • Respiratory disorders
  • Bell’s palsy
  • Diabetes

If you would like to know more about a specific health concern then please contact me.

How it works

Traditionally acupuncturists explain its effects in relation to the flow of ‘qi’ in the body and the balancing of Yin and Yang – a framework of health which maps very closely to the Western concept of homeostasis.  The way that we ingest, store and transform qi and the balance and harmony of its flow within the human body is the basis on which acupuncturists practise Chinese medicine.

From a modern perspective acupuncture has been shown to stimulate nerves and connective tissue resulting in profound effects on the nervous system including regulation of key areas of the brain.

Is it safe

All members of the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) must observe a Code of Practice, which lays down stringent standards of hygiene and sterilisation for needles and other equipment. The Department of Health have approved these procedures which provide protection against the transmission of infectious diseases.

Find out what to expect from an acupuncture treatment…