Acupuncture, Cupping &/or DTM
for Back & Neck Pain
NICE recommends a course of acupuncture for low back pain
"Research by the University of Regensburg has shown that acupuncture is one of the most effective therapies for back pain. The research published by Archives of Internal Medicine, showed that acupuncture can provide significantly more relief from lower back pain than conventional therapies. The Chinese needle treatment was 74% more likely to lead to a sustained reduction in pain or improved ability to function normally than physiotherapy, medication and advice on exercise"1
I may include other techniques into your back treatment such as: electro-acupuncture, cupping, massage and heat therapy (moxa or heat lamps). I may also recommend that you attend one of my gentle yoga classes. Many of my patients report sustained improvement in their back pain with regular yoga which includes many exercises similar to physiotherapy.
How Acupuncture may Help
Most lower back pain is caused not by serious damage or disease, but by sprains, muscle strains, minor injuries, or a pinched or irritated nerve. It can also occur during pregnancy, or because of stress, viral infection or a kidney infection. Prior to attending your acupuncture appointment I recommend you first visit your GP.
I am a professional acupuncturist and member of the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC), the UK's largest professional body for the practice of acupuncture. The BAcC fully supports NICE's (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) decision that acupuncture be made available on the NHS for chronic lower back pain. I work in private practice, not for the NHS. There is some limited acupuncture available though your GP but most people choose private treatment from a professional acupuncturist such as me. Some private health insurers cover some or all of the cost of BAcC registered acupuncturists. Visit here for a current list and check your insurance policy.
Traditional acupuncture has been used for over 2,000 years to alleviate back pain and BAcC members have for many many years been successfully treating patients for this condition either in private practice or working within the NHS. The NICE guidelines are a rubber stamp of the positive work already being undertaken as well as an endorsement of the wealth of research evidence now available in this area.
It is essential for patients to choose an acupuncturist who is registered with a professional body. BAcC members such as myself have extensive undergraduate degree level training in acupuncture and biomedical sciences appropriate to the practice of acupuncture in the UK. They are bound by strict codes of ethics, and safe practice and professional conduct.
As well as back and neck pain I treat a range of musculoskeletal issues such as osteoarthritis of the knee, headaches and migraines. Contact me without obligation to discuss your concerns.
Your musculoskeletal acupuncture treatment may include some cupping. Cupping may also be booked as a stand-alone treatment. Cupping involves creating a vacuum in glass or plastic cups, either by using a flame to burn out the oxygen inside or using a suction pump. For health and safety reasons I use plastic suctions cups.
The vacuum created by cupping may help loosen muscles and encourage blood flow. Cupping may be used to relieve back and neck pains, stiff muscles, anxiety and even cellulite. For weight loss and cellulite treatments, oil is first applied to the skin, and then the cups are moved up and down the surrounding area - 'gliding cupping.'
The marks, or Sha, that cupping may cause vary from light in colour to a deep red. These marks are a normal result of the treatments and will fade in a few days.
Cupping & gua sha, another technique, are also popular beauty treatments. I offer bespoke Facial Gua Sha or Facial Acupuncture & Gua Sha cosmetic treatments as well as Anit-Cellulite Acupuncture-Cupping Programme.
Deep Tissue Massage (DTM)
Deep massage may also be included in your treatment. A popular choice is a back massage followed by needling or cupping.
The British Acupuncture Council (BAcC)
BAcC Acupuncture & Back Pain Research Factsheet
BAcC Acupuncture & Neck Pain Research Factsheet
The NHS Choices site mentions acupuncture being recommended by NICE: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Acupuncture/Pages/What-is-it-used-for.aspx
1. Acupuncture & Back Pain on the NHS, BAcC article