NJ Natural Family Health – Myths about Acupuncture
While acupuncture and Chinese Medicine have, in recent years, become widely accepted as an important part of healthcare, there are still myths and uncertainties involving this form of treatment. During my work in both hospitals and private practice, my goal is always education and explanation so that patients fully understand why this form of treatment is effective. Below are examples of misunderstandings that I often correct.
Acupuncture’s only purpose is pain relief.
The Food & Drug Administration does recommend that doctors send patients for acupuncture treatment before prescribing addictive painkillers. There is still a nationwide opioid epidemic that has become a problem in cities and suburbs alike. In my own practice, it is something that I encounter. In addition to pain, it is important to remember that acupuncture has been used as treatment for fertility, insomnia, gastrointestinal disorders and so much more. It benefits stroke patients. Even cancer treatment centers have incorporated traditional Chinese medicine. Acupuncture has been proven to be so effective with managing stress that we wrote about it twice, here and here!
An acupuncture needle is the size of a human hair. For reference, 40 acupuncture needles can fit inside one hypodermic needle. It is nothing like having an injection or having blood drawn in the lab. In the office, everything is explained. Often, patients are surprised that the acupuncture needle has already been inserted because they did not feel it.
Acupuncture does not require extensive training.
To practice acupuncture, you must have a state license and a master’s degree, at minimum. That is three to four years of studying anatomy and physiology. In my case, in addition to a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing, I have a double master’s degree in Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, where I later returned for my Doctorate in Acupuncture and Traditional Oriental Medicine. This background allows my approach to healing to be integrative. This means I believe in using modern, or Western Medicine, combined with holistic and alternative methods of healing in order to achieve full wellness. At Mount Sinai Beth Israel’s prestigious Comprehensive Cancer Center in New York City, I coordinated the Integrative Oncology Acupuncture department where patients were treated with chemotherapy and radiation as well as acupuncture and other Chinese Medicine modalities, integrating different methods of care to get the best possible outcome.
Acupuncture doesn’t work for most conditions.
There is an old saying that dates back to ancient texts that states that “acupuncture is effective for everything but cannot grow back a missing limb”. In my experience, this is quite true. While acupuncture and Chinese Medicine are certainly adept at treating most conditions, there are a few that respond slowly. Just like Western Medicine, not everything works for everyone. That said, most patients experience significant results with even the most stubborn of symptoms.
New Jersey Natural Family Health offers unique natural healthcare strategies that will address both recent health issues and chronic disease. Dr. Shannon DiCarlo RN LAc DAOM utilizes her nursing background with her extensive experience in Chinese Medicine to develop an individualized treatment plan for each patient. Through acupuncture, Chinese Medicine therapies, and an on-site herbal dispensary, Dr.DiCarlo can restore true health to the body, mind, and spirit. Please call (973) 650-8053 or visit in-person at 366 Passaic Ave, Nutley or online at email@example.com.