When appropriately stimulated, the nervous system’s natural response is to begin a chain of reactions to aid healing.
Augmenting the nervous system response to a minute and focused noxious stimulus is the goal of Western Acupuncture. Neurochemicals, such as Endorphins and Corticosteroids, are released; the immune system brings white blood cells to the injured area, and red blood cells carrying oxygen and nutrients run to the site (inflammatory response). Western Acupuncture relaxes contracted muscles. Since the presence of the needle in a tense muscle may be painful, the nervous system sends the appropriate feedback to the muscle to inhibit or stop its spasm. This spasm is often the cause of the pain or dysfunction experienced by the patient. So by achieving an inhibition or ceasing of spasm, dry needling can take away the cause of pain and dysfunction.
The nervous system is dynamic, and its structure and function are shaped and reshaped by activity within it. At each level it continually amplifies or inhibits the signals that the brain ultimately interprets as pain. Importantly, while all pain messages reach the spinal cord, their amplitude can be reduced by other sensory & motor nerve messages simultaneously delivered to the brain. It is possible to artificially deliver such signals percutaneously through acupuncture needles innervated by mild to moderate electric current.
Cupping therapy might be trendy now, but it’s not new. It dates back to ancient Egyptian, Chinese, and Middle Eastern cultures. One of the oldest medical textbooks in the world, the Ebers Papyrus, describes how the ancient Egyptians used cupping therapy in 1,550 B.C.