Myths Surrounding Acupuncture

Let's break down the walls

MYTH: Acupuncture is voodoo, magic, snake oil or is based on superstitious beliefs.

FALSE: True only when we wear our grass skirts and body paint on casual Friday. Seriously, acupuncture is based on careful observations by the ancient Chinese through clinical experiences. It is the longest existing medical system still in use today. Acupuncture education in the United States is regulated by a single national organization. The Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) is the national accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education to accredit Master's-level programs in acupuncture and Oriental medicine. Additionally, this post graduate degree requires 1905 hours to be eligible for testing set forth by the NCCAOM (National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine).

MYTH: You have to belong to an Eastern religion for acupuncture to work.

FALSE: Acupuncture originates from China. However, acupuncture works based on repeated careful observations through clinical experience, and does not require one to belong to one religious belief or another. The Chinese Medicine Theory from which acupuncture operates crosses all cultural boundaries in the assumption that each human body, regardless of race or heritage, are essentially operating by the same principles. We are all humans beings.

MYTH: Acupuncture relies on the placebo effect for it to work.

FALSE: Until Western scientists and doctors can fully explain the acupuncture effect, let's consider that acupuncture works on animals, and one would be hard pressed to argue that animals experience a placebo effect.

MYTH: Acupuncture only treats pain.

FALSE: The treatment of pain is what acupuncture is best known for here in the West, and even is the primary condition for which the Merck Manual states for its use. However, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a complete medical model, treating symptoms (in addition to pain) related to the cold, the flu, menstrual disturbances, digestive disturbances, anxiety, insomnia, and many more. Click Here to see a list of what The World Health Organization states acupuncture to be an effective treatment for.

MYTH: Acupuncture can cure everything.

FALSE: All too often in America do we reach for the "one-size-fits-all" philosophy for all things in our lives, from weight loss and dieting tips, to ways to build interpersonal relationships. Acupuncture treatments are individually tailored to best for your presenting condition. However, it would be unethical and morally inept for us to ignore Western medicine. Acupuncture is excellent as adjunctive therapy to a doctor's treatments, particularly in the cases of cancer by which acupuncture may mediate the side-effect of chemotherapy and radiation. We hope this information has been useful. But don't just take our word for it, please see what other people have to say about acupuncture and our services by visiting our testimonial page.

- John Charlebois, L. Ac.