Acupuncture is an excellent way to manage pain and inflammation, and is one of the treatment options used by Complete Physio as part of our fully integrated approach. Acupuncture is a brilliant complement to more hands on treatments and the exercises you perform yourself. The therapy also boasts significant amounts of scientific research when it comes to the results it is able to deliver. Acupuncture is not only NHS and NICE approved but also represents a cost-effective, short-term treatment for persistent, non-specific low back pain.

Our acupuncture practicing physiotherapists are members of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (AACP) and pride themselves on keeping up to date with the latest scientific research and being committed to their continuing-professional development.

More on acupuncture

How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture can reduce pain by stimulating the brain and spinal cord to produce natural pain-relieving chemicals:

  • endorphins
  • melatonin (which promotes sleep)
  • serotonin (to promote well-being)

Combined, these chemicals assist the body's healing processes and offer natural pain relief.

Our physiotherapists and specialists combine traditional Chinese acupuncture principles with the latest methods backed by scientific evidence in an effort to reduce pain and promote healing.

What types of acupuncture are there?

At Complete Physio we use the following acupuncture techniques:

  • conventional
  • trigger point

Conventional acupuncture

Single-use, pre-sterilised disposable needles of varying widths, lengths and materials pierce the skin at the acupuncture points. The physiotherapist will determine the locations of these points on the basis of an assessment of the cause of the imbalance. A number of needles may be used during each treatment, and these are typically left in position for between 20 and 30 minutes before being removed. This treatment is often used if you have had your symptoms for a long time.

Trigger point acupuncture (dry needling)

This method of acupuncture is used to facilitate relaxation in specific muscles following traumas, for longer-term unresolved muscle pain, or as a means of increasing muscle length in order to aid stretch and rehabilitation. In the latter case, the needle is inserted into the affected muscle until the tissue is felt to relax under the needle, which is then removed. Trigger point needling often produces an effect much more quickly, and therefore, does not require the 20–30-minute treatment time.

Trigger point acupuncture can be great for releasing off and relaxing tight, overactive and painful muscles. Some good examples of areas this would benefit are the top of your shoulders (especially if you sit at a computer all day) or your iliotibial band (ITB) which runs down the side of your leg and often gets tight from running and can cause 'Runner’s Knee' (ITB friction syndrome).

*not all of our therapists practice acupuncture. Confirm when booking your appointment for acupuncture specialists.