The Western Approach to Acupuncture

September 20, 2021

Acupuncture is one tool in my Naturopathic Tool Kit that I use on a very regular basis.  It is such an excellent therapy for many different health concerns, including infertility, pain management, stress, and muscle tension.  It is really one of my go-to treatments in clinic!  When treating a patient with Acupuncture, practitioners typically employ a particular style based on either a Western or Eastern approach, with each having their own strengths and specialty.  The benefit of being a Naturopathic Doctor is that I have training in both these techniques, which gives me the best of both worlds.  These two approaches are similar in that they both use needles, however, how they use these needles are different. So let’s look a little deeper on what I mean by a Western approach to acupuncture.

What does it mean to use Acupuncture from a Western perspective?

Practitioners using a Western approach to Acupuncture generally work at altering the release of the body’s muscular and nervous chemical and physical messengers.  For example, acupuncture can help to promote the release of endorphins, the body’s natural pain reducer.  These endorphins produce an analgesic effect, reducing the sensation of pain and help to treat various pain concerns.  

Similarly, I have found that a Western approach to acupuncture is an exceptional way to treat muscle tension and knots. A muscle knot is a area of tension in a group of muscle fibers that can create local or more diffuse pain.  Those of us who have experienced muscle knots know what a pain the in neck…or shoulder, leg, or back…they can be!  By inserting acupuncture needles into these localized areas we can help to loosen muscle fibers, which in turn can provide some much needed relief for those suffering with these concerns.

A Western Acupuncture approach can help with many different health concerns.  Please see below for a list of just a few:

  • Muscle strains
  • Headaches
  • Stress
  • Nerve pain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Arthritis
  • Join injuries
  • Disc Herniation

Finally, don’t forget to check out my other editorial where I talk about the Eastern Medical approach to Acupuncture to get the full picture on how I use acupuncture in my treatment plans!

If you’d like to learn more about the use of Acupuncture, or on how Naturopathic medicine may be able to help with your health concerns, please contact Dr. Linda Shih, ND, at Spine Stretch Studio. 

Spine Stretch Studio has implemented a number of new COVID-19 procedures to keep our clinic healthy and safe.  Please read these changes to see if they may affect your next appointment. 

I look forward to helping you on the road to wellness.

Linda Shih, ND

Author: Linda Shih

Dr. Linda Shih, ND is a licensed Naturopathic Doctor who is passionate about preventative and personalized health care, always striving to understand the root cause of her client’s conditions and concerns. She hold an Honors Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Toronto, a Diploma of Naturopathic Medicine from the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, Toronto, and is a member of the College of Naturopaths of Ontario.
Naturopathic Doctors are considered primary care physicians, and while Dr. Linda Shih maintains a wide scope of practice in her family clinic, she has a special interest in pain management, infertility, as well as digestive concerns.
Using a variety of different modalities, including acupuncture, botanical medicine, and nutritional counseling, Dr. Shih, ND, always aims to help her clients achieve their best health, both now and for the future.
Linda Shih Linda Shih
September 20, 2021 September 20, 2021

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