Our body is the most powerful manufacturer of healing biochemicals (hormones, endorphins, anesthetic agents, etc) in the world. Electro-Acupuncture maximizes their proliferation into diseased tissue while also regulating the neuro-muscular system.
Electro-Acupuncture utilizes a small current, around 1/1000 of what it takes to light a lightbulb, to stimulate the nervous system to trigger the release these chemicals. This gives acupuncturists greater specificity when maximizing healing effects in different target tissue- muscle, tendon, ligament, joint capsule, bone, etc.
What Does E-Stim Feel Like- Does it hurt?
No pain, no gain, right? Wrong! In the hands of a master acupuncturist, electro-stimulation should not hurt at all. Once the acupuncture needles are inserted, alligator clips are placed on the handle and connected to a small stimulator. That device allows for a very specific frequency (hz) and intensity. Once the speed of the stimulation is selected- anywhere from one beat per second to over a hundred- the intensity is slowly turned up until the patient barely feels it. That’s it! Then, for maximum relief, the treatment remains in place for 10-30 minutes. Patients are also given a button to alert the practitioner if anything does not feel right. I find that the button usually gets pressed because the patient stops feeling anything at all. So, we carefully adjust the intensity and continue.
Here is a summary of our body’s pain killers that acupuncture enhances with elecro-stim.
(1 hz = 1 pulse/second):
- NK cells 4 hz
- Beta-endorphins 2-4 hz
- Enkephalins 2-4 hz
- Dynorphins 100 hz
- Orphanin 2/15 hz alternating
- 5-HTP 20-50 hz
- Oxytocin 2-15 hz
- Dopamine 2 hz, 15-30 hz
- NOS 2 hz, 15-30 hz
Since the 1950s there has been continual studies demonstrating various effects of electro-acupuncture in the local tissue, in the release of hormones, in the brain, and its adaptation for specific diseases. Much of what we know about how acupuncture affects the body comes from these studies because electro-acupuncture is reproducible, allowing the amount of stimulation to be controlled, limiting variables to what is being studied.
Use in Sports Medicine
My teacher- Matt Callison- discovered specific points on the surface that showed slight differences in electrical conductivity that were related to the neuro-control center of muscle bellies. This is where the nerve and muscle physically come together to govern the contraction and coordination of muscles. By stimulating this area with a needle, the muscle reflexively relaxes and strengthens. I show patients this by testing range of motion and strength before and after treatment and the results are remarkable.
Electro-Acupuncture targeting the release of specific endorphins enhances the effects. I can relax specific taut ropy muscle tissue, decrease stress on associated tendons and joints, and improve posture across large joints to prevent future injury. I can also adjust the frequency of the electro-stimulation in different phases of the healing process to reduce swelling, optimize blood flow, repair tissue, decrease tightness and guarding, etc by releasing the specific biochemicals needed for each scenario.
According to Pantheon Research, electro-acupuncture is useful for the following:
- Accelerates tissue healing: wounds, skin ulcers, etc.
- Facial Toning
- Acute and chronic pain conditions
- Acupuncture anesthesia for surgical procedures
- Reduction of Immunosuppression
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Traumatic Affective Disorders
- Substance abuse/ addictions
- And many others…