Pain and acupuncture

Pain and acupuncture

What is Pain

Acute pain warns you that you have been hurt. It starts suddenly, and when the injury heals, the pain stops. In acute injury, the pain is due to pressure from inflammation in the tissues and nerves at the site of the injury. This inflammation leads to the swelling that is observable and is part of the body’s healing response.

Chronic pain continues after the injury has healed, lasting for weeks, months, even years. In chronic injury, nerve signals that were active during acute injury continue to send messages that the body is in pain. Although chronic pain is not completely understood, it is potentially due to nerves that have become damaged. New research also suggests that chronic pain can come from a malfunction in the way the brain maps sensory information.

Pain and Sleep

Nearly two-thirds of people with chronic pain report problems sleeping. Lack of restorative sleep often makes the pain worse, thus resulting in a frustrating cycle of pain and sleeplessness. Unrelieved pain can result decreased ability to function, leading many more problems, emotional as well as physical. Acupuncture can help with this.

Research, Acupuncture and Pain

Acupuncture is widely known for its effectiveness in the treatment of pain. For it’s unique role in reducing suffering in patients experiencing pain is one of the main reasons it has become so popular around the world. The research is plentiful on the effects of acupuncture on specific painful conditions. For acute pain, a systematic review of 13 trials found that acupuncture was more effective than both sham needling and injection with painkillers.

In the high quality trials by Hugh McPherson (Fellow of The British Acupuncture Council) and team have provided the most robust evidence from high-quality trials on acupuncture for chronic pain. – Acupuncture for chronic pain and depression in primary care: a programme of research – PubMed (

In the treatment of over 16,000 people for Chronic pain, 50% of those who had acupuncture saw significant pian reduction – Acupuncture for Chronic Pain: Update of an Individual Patient Data Meta-Analysis – ePrints Soton

The mechanisms underlying how acupuncture is so effective for treating pain have been researched extensively for over 60 years. It is good that now in the UK the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) since April 2021 include Acupuncture for the treatment of Chronic Pain. –  Overview | Chronic pain (primary and secondary) in over 16s: assessment of all chronic pain and management of chronic primary pain | Guidance | NICE

Acupuncture for Pain

In Southwell Acupuncture Clinic I treat many patients with Acute and Chronic Pain either as a standalone therapy and alongside other modalities such as exercise, yoga, meditation, phycological therapies, physiotherapy, chiropractic, osteopathy and western medicine drug therapy and surgery.

We must always remember every individual case is different, each person responds to pain and its effects differently. This is the beauty of Traditional Five Element Acupuncture is that we treat the whole person looking at all aspects of how your condition or conditions affect you as a whole, treating you in physical, mental and emotional health. The patient is the centre of the treatment.


For Traditional Five Element Acupuncture treatment for your Pain and much more Contact Hannah Member of the British Acupuncture Council (MBAcC) on :-

British Acupuncture Council

The British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) is the leading self-regulatory body for the practice of traditional acupuncture in the UK.

The BAcC advocate on behalf of Traditional Acupuncture professionals and maintain the highest professional standards to protect the general public.

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