Acupuncture has survived for over two thousand years as a form of alternative medicine. Despite many believers, there are still just as many (if not more) skeptics out there.
Although acupuncture is normally associated with helping relieve physical pain or internal maladies, there are also acupuncture treatments that are specifically designed to treat acne. Even more specifically, acupuncture has been used to help treat adult acne, especially in those who have not seen success with normal acne treatments (such as cleansers, spot creams, and prescription medicines).
What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is the practice of placing very thin sterile needs into different (but specific) places on the body. The needles do not penetrate very deeply, and consequently the treatment is completely painless. (Here's a great video that shows how it works.)
Placing acupuncture needles in the skin is meant to send a signal to the brain in order to get it to modify something within the body; this is how ailments are treated and even cured simply by using acupuncture. Further, acupuncture has no side effects, making it the most desirable treatment.
Is it Really that Simple?
An acupuncture treatment designed for adult acne may sound enticing, but does it really work? In order to treat acne with acupuncture, patients are normally required to make some changes to their diets, come in for weekly acupuncture appointments, and take Chinese herbs as a medicinal supplement.
Acupuncture helps the body correct abnormalities from within, while the herbs serve to reinforce and strengthen the body’s natural processes. This is why many people who have been through an acupuncture treatment cycle believe that it works—they see results from the combination of acupuncture, herbs, and lifestyle changes.
Does it Work?
Although acupuncture has not been one hundred percent proven to help acne, there are many patients who have seen amazing results. Since acupuncture relies on getting the body to fix itself, many patients see their acne go away for good.
There is no covering up the acne or treating it only on the surface; acupuncture heals acne because it gets rid of the root causes of acne. This is why it may be more effective for some people. Creams and cleansers really only work on the surface. They do not correct the problem; they just help resolve and prevent breakouts.
Acupuncture, on the other hand, actually claims to provide a cure. But don’t forget that it isn’t simply about the acupuncture sessions alone, but the diet and herbs that go along with it.
Is it for You?
Acupuncture for acne may not work for everyone; it really just depends on how your body responds to the treatment and the herbs. However, if you are struggling with acne and do not get good results from the usual treatments, consider giving acupuncture a try.
Depending on how bad your acne is, your acupuncturist may require you to come in more than once a week until the acne is under control. Once your acne calms down, having acupuncture once a month is usually sufficient for maintaining your healthier, clearer skin.
Remember, when it comes to acupuncture, there really is not enough evidence on either side of the argument to prove that it is or is not a completely effective treatment. However, most patients who have received acupuncture for their acne believe that acupuncture is the reason why their skin clears up. Wouldn’t it be great if acupuncture could help clear your acne, without all of the harsh side effects that sometimes result from using topical treatments or prescription medications?
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