What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one of the many skills used within physiotherapy as a multi-modality approach to the management of a patient’s symptoms. It aims to reduce pain and inflammation and as a means of stimulating the body’s own healing chemicals in order to aid recovery and enhance rehabilitation using homeostasis which is the bodies system to achieve a state of balance. This can then enable the body to achieve better results with other modalities such as rehabilitation, strength and condition as the body has a better chance of responding.

The acupuncture needle used is a fine needle that simply looks to stimulate the flow of the QI which flows through the channels in the body, also known as the meridians. The QI can be stimulated at superficial skin layers which will then trigger the response to deeper muscles, organs and chemical responses. This then assists with creating the benefits in a safe and non-harmful manner. Acupuncture is used by Physiotherapists as it is supported by a high volume of clinical evidence and research and is recognised by the CSP/HCPC and AACP.

What are the benefits of Acupuncture?

There are many benefits, as listed below, but can also be an individual experience to each patient.

  • Reduce pain with a number of MSK conditions
  • Increase function and assist with rehabilitation
  • Be useful if you cannot tolerate hands on treatment
  • Reduce inflammation and prompt the healing process
  • Can assist with relaxation
  • Help with mood
  • Relieve stress and anxiety
  • Improves sleep


It is also good to note that acupuncture is an extremely safe procedure when carried out by fully qualified professionals and doesn’t look to harm you in any way.

Why choose a Physiotherapist for Acupuncture?

All Capital Physiotherapists who practice acupuncture are highly skilled within their remit and have undergone a recognised accredited training course in acupuncture as well as a 3-year degree at University to achieve their BSc (Hons) in Physiotherapy. Each of our Physiotherapists are recognised by the AACP and have regular CPD in acupuncture to maintain this recognised status.

What are the side effects of Acpuncture?

The risk of acupuncture as a treatment is extremely low, however, as with all treatments there are some risk and side effects. Acupuncture may cause some minor bleeding, bruising, soreness, tiredness, fatigue, nausea and increased hunger after treatment. These are all extremely normal and your therapist will inform you how best to overcome them post treatment.

When is Acupuncture not suitable for patients?

Acupuncture will not work for every patient however as with any treatment it is individualised, it is used when clinically reasoned as appropriate from a full initial assessment from a Physiotherapist.

Acupuncture will not be used:

  • If you have a fear of needles
  • If you have uncontrolled diabetes
  • You have a pacemaker
  • If you have a bleeding disorder
  • If there is an open wound/bruising/signs of trauma to an area
  • You have infections/skin disorders
  • Alcohol or drugs have been consumed
  • You have a history of frequent seizures.

Although not ruled out, there will be caution when treating acupuncture with pregnancy.

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