Do you suffer from joint pain and stiffness? Bellingham acupuncture and moxabustion treatment can decrease the pain, swelling and stiffness of various types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis. Even the reaction to weather changes, which was known in the old days as “rheumatism”, can be reduced with properly applied moxabustion and dietary changes in accordance with Oriental theory. Traumatic arthritis can sometimes be helped very well when the treatment is begun very soon after the injury occurs.

My own experience suggests that acupuncture and Chinese herbology are effective and present a much more favorable risk to benefit relationship than than surgery, steroids or NSAIDs to treat arthritis. Even for patients who eventually need a joint replacement, acupuncture and Chinese medicinals before and after the surgery can aid in pain relief, speed of rehabilitation, and to correct complications of surgery.

Acupuncture therapy and traditional herbal medicine prepared from different herbs and roots are individualized to each patient’s presentation whether the diagnosis is osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis or other forms of arthritis. Other symptoms beyond those of the joints may also be important, as knowing the pattern of the disorder can also help in choosing which form of herbal or Western drug therapy may work the most effectively. Acupuncture and Chinese medicinals may in some situations improve the response to Western drugs at lower dosages, as well as reduce the side effects commonly seen with pharmaceutical drugs.

Treating osteoarthritis with acupuncture should be seen as a long term process, especially if the condition has been present for many years. Often there is considerable muscle weakness or problems with the tendons and ligaments as a result of inability to exercise when pain levels are high. Bones themselves become weak when not stressed, leading to osteopenia or osteoporosis. Rehabilitation may involve improving range of motion as well as strength, and this is a process which cannot be hurried.

Time will prove that traditional methods of treatment like acupuncture, help to reduce the suffering of conditions like arthritis at a reasonable cost and with a minimum of risk and side effects.