There have been several processes proposed to explain the effects of acupuncture especially those on pain. Acupuncture Overland Park points can stimulate the central nervous system to release chemicals into the spinal cord, brain and muscles. These chemicals can change the experience of pain and release other chemicals such as hormones which can influence the body’s self-regulating systems. The changes in the biochemical chemistry will stimulate the body’s natural healing abilities and promote emotional and physical well-being. There are basically three main mechanisms of action to consider:

  • Conduct electromagnetic signals: Western scientists have conducted studies that show acupuncture points are strategic conductor of electromagnetic signals. Acupuncture enables electromagnetic signals to be relayed at a greater rate than under normal conditions by stimulating points along these pathways. These signals start the flow of pain-killing biochemical like endorphins. They also stimulate the cells from specific sites of the immune system in the body that are vulnerable to disease or that are injured.
  • Activates the opioid systems: Researches have found that several opioids may be released into the central nervous system that can reduce pain during acupuncture treatments.
  • It changes sensation, involuntary body functions and brain chemistry: Studies have shown that acupuncture can alter the brain chemistry by changing the release of neurohormones and neurotransmitters. It has been documented that acupuncture can affect the parts of the central nervous system that is related to involuntary body functions and sensation. This refers to the immune reactions and processes such as a person’s blood flow, blood pressure and body temperature. Preclinical studies documented the effects of acupuncture but they have not been able to fully explain how acupuncture works inside the framework of the Western system of medicine.

The National Institute of Health Consensus Statement on Acupuncture regarded acupuncture as a therapeutic intervention widely practiced in the United States. Many of these studies provide unclear results because of sample size, design and other factors while there have been many studies of its potential usefulness. This issue is further made difficult by inherent difficulties in the use of suitable controls like sham acupuncture groups and placebo studies. But there have been emergences of promising results that shows the efficiency of acupuncture in adult postoperative and chemotherapy nausea and vomiting and postoperative dental pain. Acupuncture may be useful as an adjunct treatment, an acceptable alternative or an additional treatment to a comprehensive management program in situations such as addiction, headache, stroke rehabilitation, tennis elbow, menstrual cramps, myofascial pain, fibromyalgia, low back pain, osteoarthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and asthma.

Acupuncture is increasingly complementing conventional therapies. Nowadays doctors combine acupuncture and drugs to control pain in their patients from surgery. Some doctors have found it possible to achieve a state of complete relief of pain for some patients by providing both acupuncture and some conventional anesthetic drugs. It has also been found that using acupuncture will lower the need for conventional pain-killing drugs that will reduce the risk of side-effects for patients who pain-killing drugs.