Acupuncture is part of a system of healthcare known as Traditional Chinese Medicine which has been widely researched and used over thousands of years. The focus is on you as an individual, not your illness and it can be used to help many different problems including pain relief, headaches, some arthritic pains and digestive issues. 

Traditional Chinese Medicine explains acupuncture as a technique for balancing the flow of life force -known as Chi or Qi (pronounced Chee)- believed to flow through pathways (meridians) in your body. Treatment involves fine needles being inserted at specific points on the body for therapeutic or preventative purposes. 

Acupuncture at Bedale Osteopaths is provided by our experienced acupuncturist, Nicola Rawstron who has 20 years of experience in private practice and within the NHS. Nicola works on the basis of treating each person as an individual, not a list of conditions, and as such she would always prefer to discuss your specific problem, so if you are wondering if acupuncture might help you , give us a call to discuss your case. 

The needles used in acupuncture are incredibly fine, disposable needles and the process shouldn’t be painful. Most people feel calm and relaxed during treatment, and may fall asleep. If you are unsure about needles then you are welcome to try a single needle to see how it feels. For people who are needle phobic it may be possible to gain many of the benefits of acupuncture using light touch to the acupuncture points. This is called acupressure and in some cases Nicola advises the use of small magnets on acupressure points to enhance and prolong the benefits of treatment.

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What happens during treatment?

  • Your first appointment for acupuncture will involve some detailed questioning about your health and aspects of your lifestyle. This will include understanding any illness that you are being treated for and any medications that you are on.
  • After initial assessment and consultation, if you would like to go ahead with acupuncture we normally begin treatment during the first session. You are welcome to try a single needle first if you have concerns or worries.
  • Treatment involves inserting very fine needles at specific points on the body. These are usually painless but if you are particularly averse to the thought of needles, acupressure (where pressure is applied to the points with the fingers or hands) can be used instead.
  • Treatment may also involve the use of massage, moxibustion (a warming treatment using smouldering herbs) and cupping (where suction cups are applied to the body).
  • Most people feel deeply relaxed during treatment. Some patients may feel a mild ache or tingling sensation when the needles are inserted. They will be left in place for about twenty minutes. It is common for patients to feel very relaxed after treatment so it is advisable to avoid strenuous exercise immediately after treatment.
  • Follow-up treatments and a personal plan will be discussed with you .This may include advice concerning diet, exercise, use of other resources, referral to other practitioners, and an agreed number and frequency of visits for acupuncture.
  • You are welcome to have a friend or relative with you during the session if you wish. If you are under 18 we do require a parent/guardian to be with you.

More about Nicola…

In addition to her work at Bedale Osteopaths Nicola also runs a clinic in Easingwold.
She has also worked in the NHS with cancer patients for a number of years via a social enterprise which she set up to provide acupuncture to patients in hospitals.

Nicola’s previous degrees in pathology and haematology give her a unique insight into both western and eastern medicine. She has developed a particular interest in working with complex or longstanding cases, and likes to keep up to date with current research and developments in acupuncture treatment.

Nicola is a member of the British Acupuncture Council and she is registered with the Teenage Cancer Trust as a volunteer therapist.

I came in for acupuncture to help my knees which were sore from severe arthritis. After having treatment I felt smoother and integrated – like my knees were part of me again. Acupuncture has made me feel more mobile and more confident in moving. The pain has definitely reduced and become less of a factor in my everyday life.

J Nylan