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Breakthrough Crohn’s Disease Guide » Acupuncture and Crohns Disease- Does it Provide Relief?

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Acupuncture and Crohns Disease- Does it Provide Relief?

Remicade is a treatment that shows much promise for Crohn’s sufferers, but it’s not the only option available.  Actually, many Crohn’s sufferers find that combining acupuncture and crohn’s, along with medical treatment, helps them effectively cope and find relief from their symptoms.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the body has approximately two thousands acupuncture points, and each of these points are connected by twenty pathways known as meridians.  The meridians conduct qi (body life energy) between the internal organs and the body’s surface.  Qi has a diverse effect on every acupoint it passes through, and helps to maintain balance within the body and mind.  It is believed by TCM that intestinal disorders, such as Crohn’s disease, are a disruption of the spleen and liver and insufficient kidney support.  Thus, it is usually the acupoints that affect these organs which will be focused on to relieve symptoms.

Although TCM believes the alleviation of symptoms is due to the stimulation of meridians via acupoints that brings balance to the body and mind, Western medicine has different theories on why acupuncture is effective.  For instance, many believe that acupuncture stimulates the nervous system which blocks pain impulses from reaching the brain. Another theory suggests that acupuncture causes the release of endorphins (natural painkillers). While another believes that acupuncture may release opiods into the body which is another substance that provides pain relief.  Despite what the real reason may be, the fact is that acupuncture provides relief.

Acupuncture is a common method for treating inflammatory bowel disease in China, and is being applied more and more in Western culture.  Studies that have been conducted on the effectiveness of acupuncture for treating Crohn’s disease carefully observed changes in the overall life quality and well-being of participants with mild to moderate Crohn’s disease.   It was discovered that traditional acupuncture was successful at alleviating Crohn’s symptoms in most of these participants.

Some of the Crohn’s symptoms acupuncture may alleviate include, but are not limited to:
• Abdominal pain
• Constipation
• Diarrhea
• Nervousness
• Anxiety
• Insomnia
• Menstrual cramps

How is acupuncture performed?  It depends on the individual.  Everyone is treated differently so that their own specific needs can be met.  That being said, the following is a general description of how traditional acupuncture is administered to patients.

To stimulate the flow of qi, solid hair-thin needs are inserted individually into particular acupuncture points that pertain to the meridians being targeted.  The needles are not inserted as deeply as hypodermic needles and do not draw blood.   They are only designed to penetrate the meridian surface which is well seeded into the affected organs and tissues. 

Acupuncture does not cause pain when needles are inserted correctly, but the patient may feel a slight tingling, aching or numbing sensation in the area where the needles are applied.  Any discomfort that may be felt tends to disappear once needles have been removed.

Once inserted, the acupuncturist may twirl the needles or connect them to an electrical current in order to provide the targeted meridian with effective stimulation.   Sometimes, specific herbs or oils are used in combination with the needles to help treat a condition and provide relief from certain symptoms.  Despite the methods used, the entire treatment process may last anywhere from 20 – 60 minutes.

In order to receive effective treatment with successful results, it is important for you to undergo acupuncture from a qualified acupuncturist, especially one who is experienced in treating inflammatory bowel disease.  It also isn’t a bad idea to consult your doctor about your decision to seek alternative treatment before you go ahead with it.

For more information on acupuncture and crohns, please visit Natural Crohn’s Disease Relief, where you can sign up for a free newsletter.

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2 Responses to “Acupuncture and Crohns Disease- Does it Provide Relief?”

  1. Tim Flesch Says:

    I have found accupuncture in combination with chiropractic adjustments is very effective. The combination is more effective for me than either modality independent of the other. I also receive remicade.

  2. Duane Loban Says:

    I was diagnosed with Crohn’s a little over 2 years ago and have gone thru the normal medicinal treatment of Asacol, Azothiaprine and Prednisone, which placed my Crohn’s into remission for a short period, but it has now come out of remission stronger and more active than ever. My doctor has now suggested the “Infusion/Remicade” treatment for me, but after researching Remicade I am not convinced that I want to proceed, one reason is that I am also diabetic, which I understand extremely complicates matters. In place of the Remicade treatments I am strongly leaning toward trying acupuncture, and/or a posible visit to the Mayo clinic in Scottsdale for their opinon.

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