The Basics

Chronic pain is pain that lasts longer than six months. It can be mild or severe, episodic or continuous, inconvenient or incapacitating. Chronic pain may originate from an injury or accident, or there may be an ongoing source of pain.
There are numerous sources of chronic pain including:

  • Arthritis
  • Carpal Tunnel
  • Headaches
  • Joint pain
  • Low back pain

  • Menstrual cramps
  • Muscle pain
  • Neck pain
  • Nerve pain

  • Pain from Injury
  • Sinus pain
  • Stenosis
  • Tendinitis

How Acupuncture and Functional Medicine can help

Substantial research has shown the benefits of acupuncture in treating chronic pain. Acupuncture works by causing biochemical changes that decrease inflammation, increase circulation, enhance the body’s natural healing abilities, decrease perception of pain and promote a sense of physical and emotional wellbeing.

In 1997, the National Institutes of Health (U.S.) officially recognized acupuncture as an effective treatment for pain. According to the 1997 NIH panel, clinical studies showed that acupuncture therapy is helpful in treating many types of chronic pain, including headaches, menstrual cramps, tennis elbow, fibromyalgia, myofascial pain, osteoarthritis, neck pain, low back pain and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Tools for people with Chronic Pain

  • Serotonin helps to modulate pain. Activities that increase serotonin include sunlight (get at least 20 minutes per day), exercise and massage (as is safe and advisable for your injury).
  • Work with your health care practitioner to resolve any digestive issues. 90% of serotonin is found in the GI tract, while only 10% is found in the brain. Find out if you have food sensitivities that may be contributing to your chronic inflammation and pain.
  • Practice deep breathing or meditation. Studies have shown that this reduces perceived perception of pain.