Low Back Pain and Acupuncture

Acupuncture is so good for low back pain

Back pain is a universal condition. I’m not sure if I have ever met anyone who hasn’t had back pain. In fact, as I sit here writing this post, I too am just recovering from a good low back injury. Some of the best ways to get immediate and long term relief is through the assistance of a really good acupuncturist.

According to Health Canada, 4 out of 5 Canadians will experience back pain at some point in time.

What causes back pain?

Well this is one of those questions that has so many different answers.  Sometimes the cause of back pain is simply trauma. Perhaps the back got strained from lifting something too heavy, or you bent the wrong way. Sometimes it can be age related where degeneration of the discs become problematic. Herniation and bulging discs are quite common too. And many times, back pain is a chronic condition where people just learn to put up with for weeks and even years.

How does acupuncture relieve the back pain?

As many of you know, I follow the principles of Master Tung acupuncture in my practice. Very rarely will I ever needle into the area of pain, especially if there is already a lot of pain in the area of concern. When dealing with low back pain, I will use the hand and low legs to move the blood and qi, thus decreasing inflammation and pain. I always love the reaction of someone experiencing this style of acupuncture for the first time. You do actually see an immediate decrease in pain, without the need to use acupuncture at the site of pain. It’s not always 100% on the first go but many times a significant change happens right away.

One of the best reactions I’ve seen was from an elderly patient who came out of the treatment room and greeted the whole waiting room with, ” you’ll never believe this, this girl is magic. I came in with leg pain, it’s now totally gone, but the crazy part is she never even pinned my leg!”

By getting more blood flow to the area and removing the blockage of qi, the healing process begins. Depending on the injury and the patient’s lifestyle, low back injuries usually heal and are fully resolved in 4-6 weeks. I will usually see the patient twice or 3 times a week for the first 2 weeks and then as symptoms recede will spread treatments out weekly to monthly.