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The New You: The stress and pain relieving power of acupuncture

Throughout this "The New You" journey, I’ve cooked, mediated and even done some yoga. But the one experience i was most nervous about was acupuncture.

CLEVELAND — When I think of acupuncture, I think of little needles going in me. And I am no fan of needles.

So, when I found out that an acupuncture treatment would be part of the healthy living program with Cleveland Clinic's Wellness Center, I was admittedly a little nervous.

Acupuncture dates back to 200 B.C. China and is proven to help with pain and tension. According to the Cleveland Clinic, acupuncture draws on the belief that an energy called qi circulates throughout our body.” When this flow is obstructed, pain occurs.  

"I put the needle in, I twist it a little bit that's what creates that piezoelectric current which relaxes the fascia in the body and it also resets the electric signal in the body which tells to the brain to relax," explained Galina Roofener, LAc.

In my appointment with Galina, I learned that acupuncture works on the belief that the body is interconnected through your muscles and nerves. The needles are thought to reprogram the body to heal itself. 

I told her that like most people, a lot of my stress goes to my shoulders and when I run for longer than a mile, I get sharp pains in my shins. So, ignoring all of my hesitations – I laid back and we were ready to get to work.

Galina explained that she would be using a Korean style of acupuncture called Sujok, which uses hands and feet as a reflection of the human body. She assured me, I'd enjoy the experience.

"Your biggest duty as a patient is to lay down and relax and take a nap for 30 minutes," she said.

So as Galina meticulously placed this needles in my shoulders and legs, I tried relaxing. It felt like a baby was pinching me at times, but it really didn’t hurt at all. After 20 minutes of laying there – I couldn’t feel the needles unless I moved.  As she starting removing the needles, I admit, my shoulders did feel better, and with a couple of twists, surprisingly, all the tension was gone.

Most experts say it takes several sessions before you get the full benefit of acupuncture, but I admit, I think I'm already a new fan. 

If you're interested in learning more, or signing up for a similar program through the Cleveland Clinic, visit: 

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/departments/wellness/integrative

call: 216.448.4325 or email: cilm@ccf.org