In 1979 the World Health Organisation made a list of 43 diseases which can be helped by acupuncture. They include anxiety states, arthritis, breathing difficulties like asthma, bronchitis or hayfever, back pain or weakness, circulatory problems, depression, digestive problems (including constipation and diarrhoea), facial paralysis, headaches, high blood pressure, indeterminate aches and pains, infertility, insomnia, menstrual problems (such as PMT or menopausal symptoms), ME, migraines, muscle and joint problems, psychological disorders, rheumatism, sciatica, skin conditions, sports injuries, tiredness, toothache, ulcers and urinary problems.
As well as requesting help for physical disorders, many people have acupuncture to relieve stress related symptoms. Acupuncture works on your mind, body and spirit and can therefore be extremely beneficial in combating the effects of mental and emotional conflicts. It aims to treat the patient as a whole and restore the balance between physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of the individual.
As diagnosis and treatment are focused on the person and their constitution as well as their symptoms, the patient may also feel better in a general way. “I’m feeling better in myself” is a common remark, and refers to such things as increased energy and vitality, greater enjoyment of life, greater confidence, better sleep and a more normal appetite. This is especially the case with people who have felt unwell in themselves but, following medical checks, have been told that there is nothing wrong with them. Many people also have acupuncture in a “preventative” way, topping up their energy to prevent illness occuring.