Could Chinese Medicine And Acupuncture Cure Your Knee Pain?

You might think that complementary wellness methods such as acupuncture and Chinese medicine are mostly used for improving your spiritual or emotional wellbeing, but the truth is that one of the most common concerns that people seek this kind of treatment for is knee pain.

Knee pain can occur for a variety of reasons, the most obvious of which being injury. You can sprain or strain the tendons and ligaments that support your knee, or develop an injury from over-use as a result of repetitive or prolonged pressure on your knee. Inflammation and pain can occur due to activities such as stair climbing, jogging or jumping, or even being overweight.

However, there are other causes of knee pain. Leading causes of the ailment are degenerative joint diseases, such as osteoarthritis, and various arthritic conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis. You might also find that it’s not just as simple as pain alone, but that your knee pain is accompanied by stiffness, weakness, swelling, redness, feeling warm to the touch, crunching sounds and sensitivity to cold weather. You might even have difficulty walking and maintaining balance, if your case is severe enough, and this may lead to further injury.

So what can acupuncture and/or herbal formulas do to address acute or chronic knee pain issues? Firstly, in your acupuncture session, your acupuncturist will choose several of the points circling the knee, as well as focusing on other acupuncture points on your body that are sensitive to pressure. He or she will insert very thin needles into these selected points, and usually apply a mild electric charge to enhance the stimulation and effectiveness of the treatment.

If there is swelling in your joint, or it is sensitive to cold conditions, your acupuncturist will apply moxibustion to the knee. This is a process whereby he or she applies a ‘moxa’ herb to the head of the acupuncture needle and allows it to burn. This gently warms the acupuncture point, which assists in pain relief.

When it comes to herbal formulas there are several approaches in offering relief. Your herbalist will combine herbs such as mo yao (myrrh), ru xiang (frankincense) du huo (pubescent angelica root) and dong gua ren (winter melon seed), to help your tissues to repair and relieve swelling. If your condition is chronic, your herbalist will use herbs that stimulate the flow of qi and blood in your knee, as well as joint-strengthening herbs such as shu di huang (Chinese foxglove root) and hu tao ren (walnut). However, your course of treatment will depend on your individual case.

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