We all know acupuncture can be used to treat a variety of adverse conditions... but why, exactly, is that?
The answer lies partially in understanding the Autonomic Nervous System, or ANS. That’s the part of our nervous systems that functions without conscious effort. It’s always scanning our stress levels and working to protect us. In modern life, we often need help to relieve the stress that builds up in our bodies.
Almeda’s co-founder, Stacy, is an acupuncturist. Ultimately, though, her perspective is that of a nurse due to her many years of experience as a registered nurse and caregiver. Along those lines, Taochemy, our sister company, uses Western-based acupuncture modalities. For our type of acupuncture, we use evidence-based acupuncture to support the body’s nervous system and the primary detox organs response for healthy PH balance.
We see the body in a practical way, as a comprehensive structure full of energy regulated by the ANS.
The body’s energy flows... through an electrical panel?
Understanding the body comprehensively, you might consider how energy flows through it. For example, Stacy looks at the body as an electrical panel, whereby the meridians are breakers.
Stacy said, “Acupuncture needles communicate with the body’s energy efficiency. There are so many times when, because of stress on the nervous system, we’ve got breakers on the breaker box that are right on the edge. When there is too much of a surge or not enough, it flips the breaker off. It loads the breaker switch.”
Basically, we want the body to be running on full power, with the right amp of voltage to function at its best.
Stacy explained, “Acupuncture is what flips switches back in alignment, powered up, and ensuring all the voltage is there with nothing missing.”
Basically, if you’re feeling low on energy, you might want an acupuncturist to evaluate your ANS.
Understanding the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS)
The autonomic nervous system influences the function of many internal organs (blood vessels, stomach, intestine, liver, kidneys, bladder, genitals, lungs, pupils, heart, and glands.)
The autonomic nervous system regulates many things, including:
- blood pressure
- bodily fluids (saliva, sweat, tears)
- body temperature
- breath rate
- fluids (balance of water and electrolytes like sodium and calcium)
- heart rate
- metabolism (and body weight)
- sexual response
The autonomic nervous system is seen as having two main parts, or branches:
- Sympathetic: The Sympathetic nervous system prepares us for potential emergencies (Thought of as “Fight or Flight” or sometimes called, “Fight, flight, or freeze.”)
- Parasympathetic: The Parasympathetic nervous system controls ordinary bodily functions. (We often refer to this as “Rest and digest.”)
Acupuncture works by striking a few key points -- the meridians -- that keep everything in balance among these systems and throughout the body. It has been shown time and again to relieve stress and support the body to detoxify.
Why acupuncture addresses so many concerns
A growing body of scientific literature has demonstrated what we’ve long suspected -- as acupuncture has been practiced over the past 3,000 years -- that acupuncture can actually help control functions of the autonomic nervous system (ANS). Studies have shown that acupuncture can control blood pressure, heart and pulse rate, skin temperature, pupil size, sympathetic nerve activities of muscles, and more.
In practice, that means that acupuncture can help relieve:
- acid reflux
- chronic pain
- and much more.
It has even been used to treat various autonomic nerve-related disorders with “clinical efficacy.” Studies have shown acupuncture effective in cases of anxiety, cardiovascular diseases, circadian rhythm disorders, epilepsy, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and subfertility, as examples.
The bottom line is that acupuncture works, and regulation of the ANS is a big part of why that’s so.
Check out Taochemy’s 5-point NADA protocol and how it works to relieve stress and detoxify the body.
How to prepare for an acupuncture session
Acupuncture is simple, easy, and relatively quick treatment, so there’s little that needs to be done to prepare. You may want to wear loose and comfortable clothing. Apart from that the preparation is mostly mental.
While some people are concerned about needles, acupuncture needles are much smaller than injection needles -- they are actually hairlike in diameter. New needles are used for every session and acupuncture is a regulated practice in the U.S., so there is no need for concern.
When thinking about booking an acupuncture session, clients don’t need to do much, but they do need to have a certain mindset.
Stacy said, “The primary preparation should be an openness to self-discovery.”
If you’d like to learn more about how acupuncture could help you, contact us at Taochemy.