Brooke Riad graduated with honours from the Canadian Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Calgary, AB, and is registered member in good standing of the CAAA. She is passionate about acupuncture and the role it can play in creating and maintaining healthy bodies and minds. Using traditional acupuncture points and other modalities, such as fire…Read More...
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What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treatment and is commonly used in western society to treat pain and for overall wellness (especially stress management). During acupuncture, needles are used to balance the flow of energy or life force which flows through pathways (meridians) in your body. This energy is known as chi or Qi. By inserting needles in specific point within the body, acupuncturists aim to restore and re-balance the energy flow.
The title “Acupuncturist” is regulated in Alberta. This means that you can only use that title if you’ve completed standardized education and certifications. Anyone using the title Acupuncturist is practicing Traditional Chinese Acupuncture. Many other healthcare providers practice acupuncture, including physiotherapists, chiropractors and naturopathic doctors. These other healthcare providers would not use the title Acupuncturist but may have a certification that allows them to practice acupuncture in some form.
Who would benefit from acupuncture?
Many of the same patients who would benefit from other professional services, such as physiotherapy, would benefit from acupuncture. Acupuncture can be used to treat many of the same conditions, and more. Many patients seek acupuncture for more than just conditions of muscles, bones and joints; acupuncture is used to improve energy levels, mood and other bodily systems.
Is acupuncture the same as IMS (intramuscular stimulation / dry needling)?
We get asked this question a lot! They ARE NOT the same. Intramuscular stimulation uses “acupuncture type” needles but it is a very specific treatment, that you can read about here. During IMS, needles are inserted into myofascial trigger points for the purpose of “releasing” a hyperactive muscle. An acupuncture treatment may consist of something very similar to IMS among many other techniques and protocols. It can get understandably confusing; however, please note that they are different!