When I was a child, I was terrified of needles. Every time I had to get a shot or my blood drawn, I would throw a fit, sometimes I would need to be held to the chair. So it's interesting that as an adult I purposefully get needles put in my body.
Acupuncture has become a self-care ritual that I frequently turn to for a variety of issues including lower-back pain relief. I have lordosis, which causes my low back pain. From middle school to high school, I saw a chiropractor, which alleviated a majority of the severe pain for years until I was in my early 20s.
My low back pain began to come back where, in some instances, getting out of bed required for me to curl myself into a ball and roll onto my side so I could place my feet in my slippers then roll through my spine to stand up. Yeah, it was a process. As my pain got progressively worse, I kept hearing friends and colleagues mention acupuncture, so I decided to give it a try.
Keep reading to find out more about how I use acupuncture to manage my back pain, including what the treatment feels like.
How Does Acupuncture Help With Managing Back Pain?
My lower back has always taken a lot of pressure. From lugging heavy backpacks to contorting it into yogic postures and complex dance moves all my life, my back starts to bark.
According to philosophies in traditional Chinese medicine, I've been experiencing energetic imbalances (aka a disruption of Qi). So my frequent acupuncture treatments help to balance my Qi, rebalancing the energetic imbalances.
During a 45-minute session, the needles are placed at specific points in the body and then I listen to calming music for 30 minutes as I doze off. Then the acupuncturist wakes me up and removes the needles.
Does Acupuncture Hurt?
I wouldn't say that acupuncture hurts, but I do feel it. It feels like a poke with a needle but the sharp sensation quickly subsides. Occasionally, there are some points that can feel more sensitive. In those cases I simply communicate that it feels a little too sharp and work with my acupuncturist to either adjust the intensity or remove that particular needle. By the time all the needles are in, I don't even feel them and usually end up falling asleep during a 45-minute session.
Every time I'm done with a session, I feel this sense of relief that keeps me coming back when I can so that I can maintain my pain relief. Along with getting regular acupuncture treatments, I also keep a consistent core-strengthening routine. The combination of the two has kept my chronic back pain at bay.