Scottsdale Acupuncture


Suffering with Acid Reflux? Try Acupuncture!

Posted Monday, January 18th, 2016 by

acid, reflux, acupuncture

Acupuncture is an ancient holistic system of healing that was developed and perfected in China. It has been practiced for more than four thousand years.

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a form of Traditional Chinese Medicine that has been practiced for thousands of years. It was first introduced into western medical practice in the seventeenth century. In recent times it has come to be seen and understood less as an alternative therapy and more of a complimentary medical technique which can be used in conjunction with western medicine. Nowadays, it is not unusual to see acupuncturists working alongside general practitioners.

In the United States acupuncture practitioners are required to be licenced either by their state, a national governing body or both. The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) has a complete list of licensed practitioners on their website.

Acid reflux and acupuncture

Acupuncture has been used successfully to treat acid reflux, and relieve the unpleasant symptoms by stimulating energy flow which can help to relax the esophagus and thus prevent backflow of food and stomach acid.

How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture works with the body’s ability to re-balance its natural energy flow or Qi (pronounced chee). The re-balancing stimulates healing. Because it works with the body’s natural energy flow it is a much less invasive form of therapy. Once one area of your body is out of balance then other areas are required to work harder. If not corrected, this initial imbalance will create a cascade of imbalances, which in turn can lead to chronic and even malignant diseases.

Acupuncture therapists have begun to incorporate electro-acupuncture which uses electrical currents along with the needles.

Does acupuncture hurt?

Acupuncture generally does not hurt, providing the patient is relaxed. However, there are some tender points – such as the side of the big toe where the patient may feel some discomfort.

Acupuncture is widely used for many gastrointestinal complaints including nausea, indigestion, stomach lesions, colitis, chronic constipation, severe diarrhoea and vomiting. It has been used to great effect in the treatment of acid reflux.

What does the treatment of acid reflux with acupuncture involve?

There are many external triggers for acid reflux. They include:

  • Smoking
  • Excess consumption of alcohol
  • Garlic and onions
  • Spicy foods
  • Too much chocolate
  • Citrus fruits and citrus juices
  • Coffee and tea
  • Carbonated drinks such as soda
  • Peppermint
  • Tomatoes and other ‘night shade’ vegetables such as potatoes and peppers
  • Stress

It is strongly advised that you remove or avoid these triggers to assist the course of acupuncture that you will be undertaking.

Your acupuncturist will take a full rundown of your medical history and document the foods, drinks and any other triggers that may cause acid reflux. Your therapist will also want to know about any medications, both traditional and alternative that you might be taking.

Once your medical history, dietary and lifestyle habits have been established a treatment regime will be set out. Acupuncture uses ultra-fine needles that are inserted into the top layer – subcutaneous tissue – of your skin. These needles can be manipulated, either by hand or by electromagnetic current. These techniques are used to stimulate your energy flow and assist with re-balancing.  To prevent infection, acupuncture needles are sterilized and single use only.

You may be amazed at how rapidly your condition improves once your course of treatment has commenced. Even when patients appeared to be ‘cured’ of their symptoms, it is recommended that follow up treatments take place. In addition, your therapist will recommend that you avoid the triggers that cause your acid reflux, in this way you will be taking an active role in your own recovery and treatment.