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 Lower Back Pain? Why Not Get Needled Into Shape!
From The Desk of: Dr. Sandra Testaguzza

Athletes get needled into shape to recover from their injuries. Whether they use it to reduce pain, recover from injuries faster, or as a drug-free method of enhancing performance, it is clear that more and more athletes know that acupuncture help them stay in top form. Not surprisingly, the use of acupuncture by well-known athletes may be one reason for the increasing interest in this ancient healing practice by the general public. The public realizes that their sports idols are using acupuncture to help with pain or to speed recovery. Then they decide that maybe they should try it for themselves.  Why not?

     Needling acupuncture points is known to stimulate the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord and brain. These chemicals change the experience of pain, and trigger the release of other chemicals and hormones which influence the body's own healing mechanisms.

     Experts especially use acupuncture for chronic low back pain. Low back pain is one of the most common ailments in the United States and Canada, "second only to the common cold."   Back pain is often mysterious. Injury to muscles, ligament nerves, or the spine can sometimes be responsible, but most people with back pain cannot recall a specific incident that caused the pain. Weak muscles in the back and abdomen is sometimes the cause. MRIs (which use magnetic fields and radio waves to reveal the spine in more detail than an X-ray) and other imaging tests may reveal nothing, despite the pain. 

In fact, abnormal-looking disks are just as likely to show up in people with no back pain as in those with pain. In Chinese Medicine, 95 % of low back problems are occasioned by low kidney energy, meaning that there is a shortage of energy flowing in the back area through kidney & bladder meridians, causing stiffness or pain that could eventually irradiate in the leg area known as sciatica. Other symptoms related to kidney energy such as fatigue, incontinence, headaches, sinusitis and upper neck & shoulder pain can also be alleviated at the same time within the same treatment.

     Back pain may also be a sign of arthritis. In fact, acupuncture has proven to give excellent results in arthritic related problems, joint & knee pain as well, whether your pain is weather related or not.

     Researchers in the U.K. asked 50 top experts in the field of lower back pain to complete a questionnaire designed to gather opinion on the effectiveness of complementary methods of treating this very common condition. When analyzed, the results suggest that for low back pain, most experts considered acupuncture most effective. Apart from the discomfort, back pain complicates your life--it's hard to work, exercise, golf, or enjoy life when you are in pain.

     *Always consult your family physician if your back pain is accompanied by numbness, nausea, fever, and or vomiting. A child or elderly person with sudden back pain needs medical attention.
      According to the World Health Organization, these conditions can be managed and overcome by acupuncture: bursitis... tendonitis... sciatica... low back pain... headaches... neck & shoulder pain arthritis... joint pain... carpal tunnel... dizziness...migraines... shingles... allergies... sinusitis... asthma... digestive disorders... insomnia... hot flashes... depression…nausea... stress urinary problems... menstrual disorders... addiction.

     Sandra is a sports medicine specialist, herself a Black Belt in Chinese Martial Arts. She obtained her private practice license from the Quebec Medical Association, is a certified professor of acupuncture and has 17 years experience in private practice. She is also affiliated with York University-on the Advisory Board as a Wellness Consultant.  Sandra works in collaboration with chiropractors and medical doctors to give her patient the best and safest care possible. She has had wonderful success in treating pain and takes in patients she is sure are acupuncture candidates.

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