For the countless allergy sufferers of this world, the effects can be miserable in their day-to-day lives. The constant sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, and runny nose can feel defeating and never-ending. Many feel desperate for any type of relief. Unfortunately, allergy medications may not be enough. In fact, they may just add to the list of symptoms like fatigue, dizziness, and nausea. For someone searching for a non-medicated way to treat allergies, it is possible acupuncture may just be the life-altering answer. The latest research suggests that alternative medicine like acupuncture can help with allergies. In fact, seasonal allergy sufferers have seen significant improvement in their symptoms after a series of acupuncture treatments. It can be a wonderful add-on to conventional therapy.
Can Acupuncture Help With Allergies?
What is Acupuncture?
To understand and grasp how these two can positively interact with one another, let us quickly break down both acupuncture and general allergies. Acupuncture is a practice of TCM (traditional Chinese medicine). Studies suggest that we have a network of energy lines called meridians located throughout our bodies. These meridians act as pathways for our energy to flow. Multiple symptoms may rear their ugly heads if these lines get disrupted. Acupuncture is able to realign this energy.
The goal of acupuncture is to renew and restore the communication between the organs and the nervous system, as it is all connected. Reestablishing this connection helps improve the immune system, which will, in turn, reduce these not-so-fun symptoms. To perform acupuncture, a licensed acupuncturist inserts ultra-thin needles into the skin. Researchers also believe that in doing so, endorphins and serotonin get released. Furthermore, it may decrease inflammation, which plays an influential role in the body’s response to the substance that is causing the allergies. And finally, it may increase blood flow. With the combination of these energetic and physiological improvements, the allergy sufferer may be well on their way to relief.
When a substance that is typically harmless causes a threat to our immune system, we categorize this as allergies. When your body detects a threat, like being exposed to allergens, the body will overreact and create antibodies. This reaction by the body’s immune system causes inflammation in the sinuses and/or skin. As a result of being outside more often, spring and summer is oftentimes the worst time of year for allergy sufferers. Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. Indoor allergies are also common. Dust mites, pet dander, and mold are among other common culprits.
Additional Reading: Control Indoor Allergens to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Fusing The Two
Acupuncture treatment has been around for approximately 3,000 years for many ailments. Acupuncturists and scientists believe that it works at a cellular level by influencing certain proteins that protect against inflammation in the body. With this knowledge, it makes sense that studies are showing significant reductions in allergy symptoms. In a German study, after two months of acupuncture, sufferers reported less need for medication and overall improved quality of life compared to those who did not undergo the treatment.
Most acupuncture treatments for allergies will take place in a clinical setting, with each session taking about an hour. The practitioner will go over the basics and typically show where each needle will be placed. They will evaluate your situation, health history, and other treatments. After this consultation, an appropriate treatment plan will be implemented. One treatment may be enough, while some may need several.
The fear of needles is not uncommon for many. However, it is important to know that acupuncturists place the needles intricately enough that there should be essentially zero pain or discomfort. After the needles have been superficially placed on the skin, the practitioner will leave them in for roughly half an hour. The practitioner may exit the room, dim the lights, and play some ambient music. Many people report dozing off during this relaxing half-hour only to wake up feeling revitalized and refreshed. The needles will then be removed, and the patient is off on their merry way.
Acupuncture is continuously proving to be a wonderful addition to medication for allergy sufferers. For people seeking natural remedies, receiving acupuncture has been proven to help with allergies. In fact, acupuncture is a natural treatment that does not require any more introduction of chemicals into the body. The nasty effects of allergies no longer need to be a daily struggle. Acupuncture may be the solution you’ve been looking for all along.
Southlake Natural Family Wellness
Our mission is to support the health and well-being of our patients by offering individualized, comprehensive holistic care including acupuncture, herbal recommendations, customized nutritional counseling, allergy elimination (NAET), whole food supplements, lifestyle suggestions, moxibustion, and cupping, as well as helping couples get pregnant and STAY pregnant by supporting all the paths to conception.
About Farrah Hamraie
Farrah Hamraie, L.Ac, MOM, Dipl.OM (NCCAOM), is licensed and board-certified in Acupuncture and Herbal medicine in the State of Texas with a Masters of Oriental Medicine from the Dallas College of Oriental Medicine. She is also a Diplomat of NCCAOM (the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine), a Board Certified Acupuncturist, Chinese Herbalist, and a member of the American Association of Oriental Medicine.