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Acupuncture Sydney | Acupuncturist North Sydney

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medical treatment technique believed to have been practised as early as 4000 years ago. It involves the insertion of a number of extremely fine needles into various acupuncture points along the Qi (energy) pathways within the body. Whilst truly ancient, acupuncture’s flexible theoretical framework means it is still highly relevant in treating the illnesses of our current time.

Acupuncturist Darlinghurst

How Does Acupuncture Work?

In Chinese medical theory, each energy pathway connects with an internal organ, and the stimulation of points along this pathway can influence the functioning of that organ.

Put simply, any abnormalities to the flow of energy through these channels, such as a stagnation or blockage, may result in disease, pain or a host of other symptoms.

Needling points along this channel removes the blockage and encourages a smooth flow of energy, which, in turn, brings health.

Benefits of Acupuncture

The benefits of acupuncture form a long list. An interesting read is the World Health Organisation’s “Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials”.

See also What does Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine Treat?

Acupuncture Points and Meridians Explained

There are 365 acupuncture points on 12 main acupuncture meridians and 8 extraordinary meridians. The main channel points, along with a long list of non-channel points, cover most areas of the body. An acupuncture point can be selected to treat a problem at its local area, or because of its particular effect on the internal organ that its meridian connects with.


There are many ways to stimulate an acupuncture point other than by needling it. Acupressure simply massages the point using various techniques. Acupressure forms part of traditional Chinese remedial massage known as Tui Na.

What is Acupuncture For?

As we already know Chinese medicine uses a range of tools to treat disease. The main ones are acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine.

Many treatments involve a combination of the two but this depends on the diagnosis.

For example, a patient with frozen shoulder or sciatic pain may get sufficient benefit from acupuncture alone, while a patient with chronic insomnia may only need to use herbs. For many pain issues we often work in conjunction with an osteopath to help your rehabilitation your injury faster.

In most conditions, however, acupuncture and herbal medicine combined, achieves the best results.

Does Acupuncture Hurt?

Chinese acupuncture should produce a very mild sensation in the form of a dull ache, throb or electric shoot. This is a sign the needle is in place and is doing its work.

This sensation can often be described as relieving and even pleasurable, in the same way that someone might describe a deep massage as pleasurable.

Acupuncture needles are extremely fine so insertion does not give the same sharpness or “sting” that an injection or blood test does.

Most patients are fairly indifferent about the sensation experienced during acupuncture, so please don’t be concerned about it being painful.


Electro-acupuncture is an excellent enhancement to traditional acupuncture.

Electro-acupuncture is used mainly to treat pain, musculo-skeletal and neurological disorders and involves passing a mild electrical current between two needles and is very effective at improving Qi (energy) and Blood circulation to an area.

Does Acupuncture Work?

Acupuncture has been recognised as an effective treatment, with benefits for a wide range of conditions, by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in “Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials”.