Acupuncture is an ancient, well respected and widely practised natural therapy. It can safely and effectively help with a wide range of acute and chronic health conditions, either on its own or alongside conventional Western medicine.
Pain and illness are signs of imbalance, which happens when the body’s Qi, or vital energy, cannot flow freely. This can happen for many reasons, with emotional and physical stress, poor nutrition, infection or injury amongst the most common causes.
The overall aim of acupuncture treatment is to restore balance. It works through the insertion and stimulation of ultra-fine, sterile needles along the body’s energetic pathways, or channels. These contain and carry Qi to all parts of the body - from the most superficial level (skin, hair, nails) to the deepest (organs, bones, blood).
In a way, acupuncture and channels work similarly to a water irrigation system. Needles inserted in a strategic combination of points release or redirect the flow of Qi into deficient areas, gently rebalancing the disharmony and removing pathogens.
Acupuncture is widely considered to be beneficial for a range of illnesses and injuries - from clearly defined symptoms to more general feelings of ill health and discomfort, reduced energy or low mood.
At your first appointment you will be assessed regarding your current state of health, medical history and constitution. Symptoms which may seem unrelated can often be inter-related and two separate issues can be part of the same pattern.
All information provided by you will be held in strict confidence. Once the medical history has been taken, you will be asked to lie down on a treatment couch and your pulses will be taken. In Chinese Medicine we take many more pulses than in western medicine as these indicate the state of organs and meridians.
You will be asked to show the practitioner your tongue which also gives an indication of your state of health. After this, very fine, sterile needles will be inserted into the skin and left in place for 20 minutes. During this time, the practitioner will continue to check the pulses and explain what is happening.
You are encouraged to offer feedback about what you are experiencing if you wish but you may just feel like lying back and relaxing, some people even have a snooze during treatment – whatever feels comfortable for you, is right for you.
We advise you to wear loose, comfortable clothing which will allow you to move easily and can be rolled up if needed. In some cases, you may need to remove a particular item of clothing. Towels and blankets will be provided to maintain modesty.
The outcome of each treatment will be individual and will depend on many factors. You may feel a difference in your condition immediately or it may take longer. You may notice a difference in things other than your presenting symptoms, such as sleep, mood, energy or other issues following your treatment. Sometimes after a treatment you may feel tired and need to rest, it may be that you get a burst of energy – it’s individual and can vary from session to session.
We generally advise to expect up to five sessions for your body to become rebalanced but this does vary from person to person. Chronic conditions may require more treatments and some, such as the induction of a baby for example, may require fewer or only one. You will be evaluated at the end of your first session and given a treatment plan.
Medical Acupuncture / Dry Needling
At Bridgeham, osteopaths may use a type of acupuncture approved by the British Medical Acupuncture Society called dry needling. Some dry needling techniques help super tight muscles to relax. It works in a similar way that if you get a splinter, the surrounding muscle relaxes to help the body release it.
It is a spinal reflex pattern that works neurologically and in most cases without any discomfort whatsoever. It has been clinically proven to be effective in treatment.
I just wanted to write to say thank you so much for helping me with my back problem today. I am so grateful to you - it certainly feels a lot easier than it did when I came in this morning! I really don’t want to think about the next few months when I will not be at your Pilates classes! What is so great for me, is that you have not only helped me regain my strength, but amazingly I improved my mental health beyond recognition - I will be forever grateful to you, and hope to have a long long time of participating in your classes and your lives! Thank you again for being so super!!!
I came to Bridgeham as I had some health & wellbeing cover through work which included massage and various treatments. All has been great! I had a consultation, osteopathic review and a relaxing body massage. Due to having recently had breast cancer and having lymph nodes removed through operation, this was very helpful with regards to lymphatic drainage and I was reassured throughout. All practitioners listened and all treatments have been beneficial. Thank you.
Well I must say I’m impressed. Got home after seeing you and a situation that would normally have stressed me out seemed to have no effect at all! I keep waiting for the old anxiety to kick back in, thinking it can’t have been that simple, but clearly it was. Think I’ll be contacting you soon for some help with weight loss.
“A visit to Bridgeham Clinic can be a life enhancing experience, made enjoyable by the friendly atmosphere and the genuine desire of everyone to help get you better. The rest is down to you!”
I was in so much pain, Pauline on Reception was absolutely lovely, made me coffee, felt at home and at ease straight away. Treatment was fantastic, felt quite emotional with the help I received. Diagnosed and treated straight away. So happy!
I have spent a lot of money and time with a multitude of different clinics over the years and not one of them has come close to having the level of knowledge that the Bridgeham Clinic has.