Skin is the most visible and vulnerable organ, and getting affected by skin disorders is very common, especially conditions like acne, rosacea, psoriasis, and eczema. While acne is something clearly associated with adolescents, and eczema gradually becoming very common in children, these conditions are no longer restricted to children or adolescents alone.
While we seek solace in over the counter medicines, our distress does not lessen by any yardstick; in fact, it increases, sometimes coupled with the side-effects of the medicines.
Acupuncture to the Rescue of Skin Disorders
Since time immemorial, Traditional Chinese medicine has been steadfastly using herbs and acupuncture to treat a number of health problems which include a number of skin disorders, such as eczema, acne, psoriasis, and others. According to Traditional Chinese medicine, good health can be attained when abalance is struck between the body’s internal systems and also the environment we live in.
It is when the balance is disrupted and there is displacement of the balance between energy (Qi), blood, yin, and yang, it gives way to diseases. It is also believed that the environmental conditions play a role in contributing to the disease, such as wind, heat, cold, dampness and dryness and so on.
Additionally, the impact of the state of your mind on your health cannot be ignored.
The Combination of Acupuncture and Herbs as a Treatment Option
Traditional Chinese medicine can be applicable to four segments of acupuncture: Chang Yang (skin sores), Gan Men Bing (rectal or anus disorders, such as haemorrhoids), Pi Fu Ling (skin disorders, such as warts and eruptions), and Za Bing (disorders, such asgangrene and acute abdominal disorders).
Traditional Chinese medicine uses the Three Yellow Cleanser (San Huan Xi Ji), which can treat a majority of skin disorders, such as eczema, acne, dermatitis, rashes, and psoriasis. The century-old potent formula utilizes four cleansing herbs which consist of a “cold property” that can minimize the internal heat (Qing Re), put a stop to itching (Zhi Yang) and controls further secretions (Shou Se).
The three of the color of the herbs used in the formulation is yellow, hence it is called the yellow cleanse. The four herbs, which include the Rhubarb (Dai Huang), Phellodendron (Huang Bai), Sophora (Ku Shen), and Skullcap (Huang Qin) — were extensively studied and found to have a culmination of antibacterial, anti fungal and antiviral qualities.
Extensive Clinical Researchhas indicated that Phellodendron (Huang Bai) is really effective in treating eczema. Apart from using these Chinese herbs, traditional Chinese medicine also strongly recommends acupuncture as a parallel treatment for skin disorders.
Activating acupuncture points proliferates the production of end orphins or good hormones and also stimulates the immune and endocrine systems, in tandem. Acupuncture points are specific nerve points that lead the way to the system of energetic meridians, which perform different kind of functions on their location.
To get relief from skin disorders, acupuncture points along the arms, legs, and torso, are activated. The acupuncture practitioner utilizes fine high-grade surgical steel needles, which are used not more than once, to activate the specific acupuncture points.
The needles have to be used from 10 minutes to one hour, all depending on the effect, desired. Heat or electricity can also be applied using three heated needles or wired small alligator clips that can be attached to the needles and a very mild electrical current is charged with a small battery.
Although no long-term comprehensive studies have been performed to investigate acupuncture’s effects on skin disorders, several clinical trials focusing on less than a hundred cases were included in the 2002 World Health Organization nonserial publication, Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials.
Treatment alone won’t provide the desired effects on the skin, Traditional Chinese Medicine also recommends changes in diet. Generally, people who suffer from skin disorders should skip alcohol, fish, shrimp, and crab. Eating a good quantity of leafy green vegetables and fruits should be made a part of the treatment procedure.
Acupuncture treats Acne
Acne, also called acne vulgaris, is a skin disorder that appears on the face, chest, shoulders, and back.
Acne results from comedones pimples (clogged pores; whiteheads or blackheads) and also large and deeply rooted lumps (acne cysts or nodules). Chinese medicine has several potent remedies that can treat acne successfully with the collective treatment protocol of acupuncture, herbal medicine, and dietary and lifestyle modifications.
There is an enormous impact on the skin, read drastic reduction of pimples and acne lesions which can be usually seen within the duration of three months. Though acne scar reduction takes a little more time to show results, large scars may not disappear completely but their size is drastically reduced.
Acupuncture treats Psoriasis
Psoriasis or the scaling disorder is an autoimmune disorder of the skin.
The body’s immune system takes a dip and causes a rapid turnover of skin cells, which causes the skin to turn silvery-white and form typical plaques. There are actually five types of psoriasis: plaque,inverse, guttate, pustular and erythrodermic. Plaques usually appear around the elbows and knees but can affect other parts of the body as well, which include the armpits, back, buttocks and scalp.
Psoriasis plaques can from small areas to large patches covering the entire body. The nails and joints may also be affected, as is found in psoriatic nail dystrophy and also psoriatic arthritis, respectively. Conventional medical treatments involve medications and/or steroids which suppress the immune system. The side-effects of the treatment can cause a host of other diseases and side effects, some of which are really dangerous.
Acupuncture, together with dietary modifications also plays an important role in treating the condition from its roots.
Acupuncture treats Dermatitis and Eczema
Dermatitis, or eczema, is a skin disorder that affects the superficial layers of the skin.
Eczema is a subcategory of dermatitis, but the two terms are often used interchangeably. Symptoms of the skin condition are extreme dryness and rashes with at least one of the following symptoms, redness, itching, swelling/edema, redness, blisters, crusting, oozing or bleeding.
When the rash disappears,the area discolors. Other types of dermatitis are contact dermatitis, atopic dermatitis (also referred to as eczema), seborrheic dermatitis, Lichen Simplex Chronicus (or neurodermatitis), and pompholyx eczema.
Recent research has shown promising results in reducing both itch and lesions following treatment that includes both Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture. An analysis done on 14 patients in the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI) in New York who suffered from persistent atopic showed much improvement with Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture.
The study showed a marked areduction in symptoms within a space of 2.5 to 3.5 months, depending on the patient. The course of treatment differs from individual to individual, but results are encouraging even in cases of severe eczema.
Acupuncture treats Rosacea
Rosacea, a skin disorder, which affects women between the age-group of 30 to 50.
The symptoms of Rosacea include blushing, facial redness, flushing of the face, spider-like blood vessels (telangiectasia) on the face, burning and stinging on the affected skin of the face, acne-like sores on the skin that may ooze secretions and then crust over and red and watery eyes. Rosacea can get worse with times, so it needs immediate treatment.
Rosacea can rob away your self-esteem, as it affects your personal appearance. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine(TCM), rosacea is a result of an energetic imbalance in the body. In TCM, rosacea is thought to be the result of stagnation of energy also called a ‘heat condition.’
An acupuncture treatment starts off with a thorough examination andis then followed by adetailed consultation. Chinese medical treatment for rosacea typically includes acupuncture, herbs and apart from lifestyle changes.
Acupuncture point needling dissipates the heat and qi stagnation and also regulates the body’s acidity levels.
Apart from needling, herbs and lifestyle changes help re balance the body’s systems. Eliminating certain things from your diet, such as wheat, dairy and spicy foods, supplementing with vitamins A, B, C, D, E and zinc supplements, and consuming more fibre and water can really prove to be beneficial for your health. Also, avoiding common rosacea triggers such as heat, alcohol,and chemicals is also recommended.
So, are you suffering from any of the above-mentioned skin problems? If you are, then activating the acupuncture points for skin problems can really help. It can give you lasting results without any side effects. Also, you can carry out this treatment along with your conventional treatment. Take this route to health and wellness and reap its innumerable benefits.