Needles don’t immediately come to our minds when we say medicine. With the possible exception of injection needles of course. Needles are more like on the field of sewing (obviously since it was for that purpose it was invented in the first place right?) and in our minds it is compartmentalized there. But the truth be told medicine employs needles in a way to heal sick patients.

And as many of you have heard acupuncture is the method of employing different types of needles (not the ones employed as sewing needles of course) to target certain problematic areas of a patient’s body. It is said to have originated in China more than two thousand years ago and slowly got adopted by the western world. This system of treatment revolves around the premise that in our bodies there are patterns of energy flows that is necessary for a healthy body. They refer to this as the “Chi”. Of this pattern or flow is interrupted it is believed that certain illnesses and sicknesses will be caused.

To correct these interruptions people who administer it use needles to pierce the skin to get rid of the blockage. These needles are not just randomly used on any one. It is first sterilized and then it is used. The places of puncture is also different. According to the sickness these target points are changed. The paths through which the energy flow are called meridians. And the needles are used along those path ways where there could be a blockage of such energy. By doing so they unblock the energy and maintains the balance of its flow. The needles are very thin and they are inserted in different depths through the skin. Heat, pressure and a small amount of electric current I sometimes employed by modern users.

The scientific truth of this Chinese medical technique is not yet fully established in the medical world but opinions are divided. Many claim that it is good for certain types of illnesses like migraines, headaches, dry mouth (xerostomia) etc. There is a certain degree of therapeutic value in it as common understood. There can be some side effects like infections on the skin where it was punctured.

Myotherapy also uses this method as one technique to handle muscle pains and related ailments. This ancient Chinese medical treatment is now rapidly gaining popularity in non-Chinese nations and there are many patients who have seen successful results using this method of treatment.