Acupuncture for Easing Digestion

Woman needs acupuncture for indigestion

Got Digestive Problems? Relieve Your Symptoms Naturally with Acupuncture

Are you one of the millions of Americans who struggle with chronic digestive issues? If you're tired of relying on antacids and medications to control your symptoms, acupuncture offers a better option. Treatments reduce flare-ups and help you manage heartburn, diarrhea, acid reflux, constipation, and other symptoms.

Why Digestive Problems Happen

Problems can occur at any point during the digestive process. For example, wayward stomach acid may irritate the sensitive lining of the esophagus and trigger heartburn. The esophagus is the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach. Acids normally remain in the stomach, but may flow backward due to pressure on the stomach or a weak or faulty valve between the stomach and esophagus.

Diarrhea or constipation are likely to occur if food moves through your digestive system too quickly or too slowly. Digestive diseases and conditions, like irritable bowel syndrome, gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD), and ulcers, trigger uncomfortable symptoms that may make you dread eating.

How Acupuncture Eases Digestive Issues

Acupuncture focuses on restoring the proper balance to your body and your digestive system. Qi, a vital life force essential for good physical and mental health, flows through your body in a series of 12 meridians. Imbalances can occur when Qi becomes blocked at any point in a meridian. Acupuncture treatment clears the blockages, relieving unpleasant symptoms and improving digestion.

Treatments target the source of your digestive issues in addition to relieving your symptoms. Unlike over-the-counter or prescription medication, acupuncture doesn't cause any unpleasant side effects, like nausea or dizziness.

Acupuncture offers a safe, effective way to treat these digestive problems:

  • Indigestion and Heartburn. Whether you have occasional or frequent indigestion or heartburn, visits to the acupuncturist can keep your symptoms under control. Acupuncture relieves nausea, belching, heartburn, nausea, and abdominal pain, according to research studies reviewed by Health CMI.
  • GERD. You may have GERD if you experience heartburn more than two times per week. GERD happens when stomach acids flow backward and irritate the lining of the esophagus. Inserting hair-thin needles in the Gongsun acupuncture point on the side of the foot may help control the amount of acid your stomach produces.
  • Nausea. Do you experience nausea after eating? Stimulating an acupuncture point on the wrist can relieve that sick feeling. Acupuncture also treats nausea caused by morning sickness, migraines, chemotherapy, and motion sickness.
  • Abdominal Pain. When your digestive system is balanced, you'll be less likely to experience abdominal pain and cramps.
  • Constipation. If you suffer from constipation, you're not alone. Forty-three percent of Americans reported experiencing constipation at least one time a month, according to information from Statista. Acupuncture can keep things flowing by improving the function of your bowel. Patients who had severe constipation had more bowel movements after 28 sessions of electroacupuncture in a research study published in Annals of Internal Medicine. Electroacupuncture involves a gentle electrical current attached to acupuncture needles that enhances the effects of treatments.
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Severe abdominal pain and bouts of constipation and diarrhea make living with IBS particularly difficult. Although acupuncture treatment can't cure IBS, it can help you manage many of its unpleasant symptoms.
  • Motility Problems. When food moves through your stomach and intestines too quickly or too slowly, you're bound to experience a few digestive symptoms, including nausea, diarrhea, belching, heartburn, vomiting, and upper abdominal pain. Motility issues can be caused by problems with the nerves that control the gastrointestinal system. Acupuncture calms the nerves, helping your nervous system work more effectively.
  • Stress. During stressful periods, it's not unusual to have an upset stomach, heartburn, or diarrhea. The body's stress response activates the sympathetic nervous system, preparing you to flee or deal with a challenging situation. Unfortunately, when the sympathetic nervous system becomes more active, your digestive system slows down. Acupuncture reduces stress by releasing serotonin and endorphins, hormones that help you feel calm and relaxed. It also reduces production of the stress hormone cortisol and may even have a positive effect on the stress pathways in the brain.

Tired of living with digestive issues? Give us a call to schedule an appointment with the acupuncturist.

Sources:

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: Digestive Diseases Statistics for the United States, 11/2014

Statista: Share of Selected Problems Among U.S. Adults Who Suffered at Least Once Per Month from Gastrointestinal Complaints as of February 2017, 9/3/2019

PubMed: Annals of Internal Medicine: Acupuncture for Chronic Severe Functional Constipation: A Randomized Trial, 12/6/2016

Health CMI: Acupuncture Benefits Digestion, Stops Burning Pain, 05/062018

Mayo Clinic Proceedings: 8/1/2020: Effect of Acupuncture in Patients With Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Randomized Controlled Trial

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