Acupuncture Myths and Misconceptions

Acupuncture Myths and Misconceptions

Acupuncture is an alternative form of medicine originating from ancient Chinese health practices. For over two thousand years, treatments have effectively alleviated pain and improved numerous types of health conditions.

This traditional Chinese method involves inserting extremely thin needles at strategic points in the body in order to restore blocked or disrupted pathways. The needles are designed to naturally fuel anatomic sites and help to bring your energy flow back to full functionality.

Acupuncture is especially recommended to treat the following symptoms:

·         chronic pain

·         stress/anxiety

·         mood swings

·         irregular

·         headaches and migraines

·         sleep deprivation

Even with acupuncture growing in popularity as an operative health treatment method, there are still a number of fallacies related to its technique and effectiveness.  To clarify, here are some myths related to acupuncture:

There is no real science behind acupuncture: MYTH

Because of its ancient, drug-free, non-invasive nature, acupuncture has often been categorized over the years as “folk medicine”. But for the past several decades, it has been widely accepted as an alternative medicine treatment option recommended by professional medical practitioners all over the world

Acupuncture hurts: MYTH

It’s fair to assume that any treatment involving needles will be painful; but in fact, acupuncture is known to be very relaxing. The needles are very thin and only sting slightly. If any discomfort is experienced in the beginning, it fades away just as quickly and leaves you feeling quite calm and peaceful.

It takes just a couple of treatments to heal: MYTH

Like any form of health therapy, the number of treatments will vary depending on the severity of the condition. Because so many patients feel instant relief after the first treatment, they believe it’s sufficient. In reality, one or two treatments alleviate the symptoms remedy the origin of the problem. It can sometimes take weekly appointments lasting several months to treat more acute, complex, or chronic conditions.

Acupuncture doesn’t attack the problem: MYTH

Acupuncture is not a Band-Aid treatment. In fact, acupuncture needles are meant to teach the body systems to heal themselves. The needles function in a way that stimulates crucial parts of the body to produce natural painkillers which reduce inflammation, improve digestive function, sleep apnea, and fight many serious illnesses. If the body heals itself, then no additional invasive treatment or pills are needed. Symptoms will alleviate as a result of a healthy, fully-functional body.

If you’re experiencing any of pain or chronic health problems, make an appointment with us today to determine whether acupuncture is the ideal course of treatment for you.


Tammy Lalonde Owner and Licensed Acupuncturist at Red Leaf Wellness

Tammy Lalonde, MSAOM BS Dipl.Ac LAc RAc Paramedic

About the Author

Tammy Lalonde is the Owner and Licensed Acupuncturist at Red Leaf Wellness in Edmonton, Alberta and has deep expertise in both ancient Eastern healing techniques as well as modern Western medicine.  She is also a Critical Care Paramedic.  Tammy earned both her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Oriental Medicine from California’s prestigious South Baylo University and her diploma in Emergency Medical Technology (Paramedicine) from Augustana University.  She holds active licensure with the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM), the College of Acupuncture and Associates of Alberta (CAAA), the California Acupuncture Board and the Alberta College of Paramedics (ACP).

Rates of PTSD in Firefighters

20years

Rates of PTSD in Firefighters

Original Source:  http://ptsd.about.com/od/prevalence/a/Firefighters.htm

Rates of PTSD in firefighters may be heightened more so than in other professions. See, many people will experience a potentially traumatic event at some point in their life. But just because you have experienced a traumatic event does not mean that you will definitely go on to develop PTSD. However, people who have experienced multiple traumatic events have been found to be at greater risk for developing PTSD.  One group of people that may experience many traumatic events as part of their job — and thus be at a heightened risk for PTSD — is firefighters.

Types of Traumatic Events Experienced While on the Job

One study of United States firefighters looked at the type of traumatic events experienced. High rates of traumatic exposure were found. For example, many had been exposed to crime victim incidents, people who were “dead on arrival” (where the death was not due to natural causes), accidents where there were serious injuries, and some also reported that they had experienced stress associated with giving medical aid to children and infants.Another study found that firefighters generally reported that medical emergencies and motor vehicle accidents were the most upsetting types of calls that they received.

Rates of PTSD in Firefighters

Given that traumatic exposure is common among firefighters, it is not surprising that high rates of PTSD have been found. Studies have found that anywhere between approximately 7% and 37% of firefighters meet criteria for a current diagnosis of PTSD.  It is clear from these studies that there is a big range in PTSD rates among firefighters. This is likely due to a number of reasons, including how PTSD was assessed (through a questionnaire or interview), whether other emergency responders were also surveyed along with the firefighters, whether the firefighters were volunteer or not, and where the firefighters worked.

Risk Factors for PTSD among Firefighters

A few studies have also looked at what factors might put firefighters at greater risk for the development of PTSD. A number of risk factors for PTSD among firefighters have been identified. These include:

  • Being previously in treatment for another disorder.
  • Starting work as a firefighter at a younger age.
  • Being unmarried.
  • Holding a supervisory rank in the fire service.
  • Proximity to death during a traumatic event.
  • Experiencing feelings of fear and horror during a traumatic event.
  • Experiencing another stressful event (for example, loss of a loved one) after a traumatic event.
  • Holding negative beliefs about oneself (for example, feeling as though you are inadequate or weak).
  • Feeling as though you have little control over your life.

Protective Factors for PTSD among Firefighters

Even though firefighters might be at high risk for stress as a result of their jobs, it is important to point out that most firefighters will not develop PTSD. In fact, several factors have been identified that may reduce the likelihood of developing PTSD among firefighters after the experience of multiple traumatic events. One of the most important protective factors found was having social support available either at home or through work. In addition, it has also been found that having effective coping strategies available may lessen the impact of experiencing multiple traumatic events. This is not surprising in that, among people in general, the availability of social support and effective coping strategies have consistently been found to reduce the risk for developing PTSD following a traumatic event.

Getting Help

Seeking out help may be an important way of reducing your risk for developing PTSD as a result of experiencing multiple traumatic events. There are a number of effective treatments available that can help you overcome the impact of a traumatic event. You can find out more information about treatment providers in your area through UCompare HealthCare from About.com, as well as the Anxiety Disorder Association of America.

Reference Sources

Bryant, R.A., & Guthrie, R.M. (2007). Maladaptive self-appraisals before trauma exposure predict posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75, 812-815.Bryant, R.A., & Harvey, A.G. (1995). Posttraumatic stress in volunteer firefighters: Predictors of distress. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 183, 267-271.Corneil, W., Beaton, R., Murphy, S., Johnson, C., & Pike, K. (1999). Exposure to traumatic incidents and prevalence of posttraumatic stress symptomatology in urban firefighters in two countries. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 4, 131-141.Del Ben, K.S., Scotti, J.R., Chen, Y., & Fortson, B.L. (2006). Prevalence of posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms in firefighters. Work and Stress, 20, 37-48.Haslam, C., & Mallon, K. (2003). A preliminary investigation of posttraumatic stress symptoms among firefighters. Work and Stress, 17, 277-285.Heinrichs, M., Wagner, D., Schoch, W., Soravia, L.M., Hellhammer, D.H., & Ehlert, U. (2005). Predicting posttraumatic stress symptoms from pretraumatic risk factors: A 2-year prospective follow-up study in firefighters. American Journal of Psychiatry, 162, 2276-2286.

BOOK YOUR APPOINTMENT USING OUR ONLINE SCHEDULING WIDGETBOOK NOW