Low back pain is not only an extremely common symptom; it often becomes a disabling one. At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, our doctors routinely use acupuncture as a safe, painless, and effective treatment for low back pain as well as for other musculoskeletal disorders.
If you are troubled by nagging or intense low back pain and the restricted mobility that accompanies it, contact one of our convenient offices today. Our skilled physiatrists will determine the cause of your trouble and, if appropriate, provide you with acupuncture treatments that will ease you back into your normal routine.
What exactly is acupuncture? How does it work?
For thousands of years, acupuncture has been in medical usage in China and other parts of Asia. It is founded on the principle that a primary energy source, known as Qi, flows freely through healthy bodies. When that energy source is blocked, bodies suffer pain and dysfunction.
Acupuncture is believed to be the most effective way to restore correct energy flow along the meridians (pathways) of the body. For acupuncture to maximize its potential, however, it must be administered by a practitioner with refined skills. Fortunately for our patients, the doctors at Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine have outstanding credentials in this field, having had excellent training and decades of successful experience.
Acupuncture involves the insertion of hair-thin needles into specially designated points along the previously mentioned meridians to restore the healthy flow of Qi. Once inserted precisely and painlessly, the needles will stay in place for about 20 minutes, during which time patients are completely relaxed (some fall asleep). There is no downtime necessary after an acupuncture treatment.
Though several treatments may be necessary for noticeable improvement, in some cases there are immediate, often remarkable, results. For most patients, after a few treatments, low back pain subsides or even disappears. Our doctors often find that combining acupuncture with one or more other treatments, such as spinal epidural injections or pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (PEMF), accelerates healing.
Types of Low Back Pain
Though you may have experienced one persistent type of low back pain, there are, unfortunately, many others. While low back pain can be sharp and acute, it can also be spasmodic and intermittent or can radiate from the low back down the leg. After a sudden injury and/or during certain movements, low back pain may be severe, but in many cases, it becomes a chronic ache. Low back pain can also manifest as buzzing or tingling.
No matter what kind of low back pain you are experiencing, our physiatrists are well-prepared to bring you relief with a number of nonsurgical therapeutic methods, one of which is acupuncture.
Causes of Low Back Pain that Can Be Helped by Acupuncture
One of the reasons so many people suffer with low back pain is that the back is such a complicated part of the body. Reasons for low back due to injury or illness include:
- Pinched spinal nerves (e.g. sciatica)
- Strained muscles or tendons
- Sprained ligaments
- Bulging or herniated discs
- Congenital malformation
- Dislocated vertabrae
- Compression fractures
Variables such as excess weight, lack of exercise, or emotional stress are also factors in developing low back pain; rarely low back pain may result from bone cancer or a benign tumor. Our doctors are excellent diagnosticians and will always refer you to another specialist if necessary.
Benefits of Acupuncture in Treating Low Back Pain
At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, we are holistically oriented. We only deal with nonsurgical treatments, complementary ones like acupuncture as well as traditional ones like physical therapy. Acupuncture has a number of advantages over other low back pain treatment methods, including that it is:
- Administered with sealed, single-use sterilized needles
- Often successful when other treatments fail
- Drug-free and non-addictive
- Free of dangerous side effects
- Able to be combined with other therapies without fear of interactions
- Recognized as medical treatment by Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the World Health Organization (WHO)
At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, we recognize how valuable acupuncture is as a treatment for low back pain since it is minimally invasive, safe, comfortable, and takes only a short time to administer.
Western Medicine Now Accepts Acupuncture as Treatment for Low Back Pain
As you are probably aware, the Western world has dismissed or even disapproved of acupuncture for centuries, primarily because it could not explain the reason it worked. As Western medicine finally began its own research on the technique in the second half of the 20th century, clinical studies repeatedly demonstrated positive results of acupuncture treatments. Such results could not be ignored.
Gradually, the understanding that acupuncture was no more mysterious than antibiotics, MRI scans or laser surgery began to take hold, and Western medical practitioners looked into why acupuncture actually works. They found evidence that acupuncture is effective because it:
- Increases the speed of electromagnetic signals, facilitating the release of immune cells
- Changes brain chemistry by releasing neurotransmitters and neurohormones
- Stimulates the central nervous system, triggering the release of endorphins, natural substances that create positive feelings and suppress pain
At Long Island Spine Rehabilitation Medicine, we are firmly convinced, not only by our extensive studies and training in acupuncture but by our successful clinical experience, that acupuncture is a valuable tool for decreasing and eliminating low back pain.
Contact Us Soon to See if Acupuncture Is Right for You
Make an appointment for a comprehensive evaluation of your low back pain. We will consider many therapeutic options to determine whether acupuncture will be helpful in your case. You will find our doctors caring and responsive. Above all else, we are committed to the idea that compassionate, open-minded practitioners are a necessary part of the healing process.