How does acupuncture work? The nervous system? Natural painkillers? Magic? Well, definitely not magic but it works on many levels. Click to read more!

How does acupuncture work?

One of the most common questions I get from new patients is “How does acupuncture work?”

It’s a simple question, but simple isn’t always easy. Acupuncture is a complicated medicine, with layers of historical and poetic metaphor to explain complex physiological responses. For so small of a question, the answer is huge.

But I live for questions like this. I used to be a linguistics major and linguistics isn’t the study of a wide variety of languages, it’s the study of how languages work. Linguists study how this group of words or vocabulary evolved differently than this group, even though they are talking about the same thing. I may not be a linguistics major anymore, but this philosophy has carried itself forward into my practice.

My hope for this blog post is to give you an understanding of this big idea – how acupuncture works – in the vocabulary you use every day. While I may have been trained to think in terms of qi, blood, yin and yang, acupuncture works through blood flow, hormone cascades, muscle release and more.

So, if you’re ready, let’s dive in.