Acupuncture is an alternative therapy that involves puncturing the skin with very fine needles in specific areas of the body. The therapy is based on the theory that a specific form of energy flows throughout the body and travels in channels known as meridians. This energy is referred to as Qi. When Qi is unable to flow freely throughout the body, many forms of illness are thought to occur as a direct result. Acupuncture is believed to restore the flow of Qi and once those energy flows have been restored, it is believed that good health will return.
The same principles apply for children as they do for adults, however, children only need a quick in and out insertion of the needle rather than pins being left in for 10-15 minutes. The needles are fine and quick and the child hardly notices them at all. The other important point to note is that not many points are needed either because their Qi (energy) is so new and is easily restored to balance. For example, on a baby must use one to four insertions which take a second or two each. It doesn’t sound like much but it’s enough to create a powerful result.
Many think acupuncture is just for pain. It can encourage the release of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. But acupuncture helps children and teens with a wide range of issues, including:
- Sleep problems
- Reflux, nausea and stomach pain
- Bone and joint pain
- Back pain
- Asthma and allergies
This is done by:
- Gently inserting needles
- Using laser stimulation
- Electrical stimulation
- Acupressure (gentle massage of points)