Traditional Acupuncture (TCM)

What is Traditional Acupunture?

Qi symbolTraditional acupuncture is a tried and tested system of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), which has been used in China for thousands of years to maintain good health. The underlying principle of Chinese Medicine is that all the functions of the body are related to the flow of Qi (vital energy – pronounced ‘chi’) around the body. Symptoms occur when the flow of Qi is impaired by physical and emotional causes such as poor diet, phyiscal injury, and emotional trauma such as anxiety, anger or grief.

How can acupuncture help me?

The benefits of acupuncture are now generally well accepted, and it is a treatment of choice for many physical conditions including back pain, frozen shoulder, osteo-arthritis and many more. It may surprise you to know that acupuncture can be really effective for migraine sufferers, for nausea and can even be used to treat fertility problems. As well as physical conditions it can also be helpful with many emotional conditions such as stress, anxiety and low mood and can help boost your energy levels.  This is by no means a definitive list and for a full list please view my website.

On my homepage under A-Z of conditions, I have listed common conditions that I have treated over the 17 years I have been practising. For each condition I have attached the research evidence available based on randomised controlled trials. There is a growing body of qualitative research about traditional acupuncture, which has found that what patients most value is the focus on treating the whole person and the fact that several symptoms are addressed in a treatment session.

Who has acupuncture?

All ages and backgrounds

People who have acupuncture come from all different walks of life, in the 17 years I have been practising, I have treated GPs and consultants; professors; manual workers; elderly people; pregnant women; and teenagers. Acupuncture is used by people from all backgrounds and at all stages in life.

What happens during treatment?

At the first appointment, I take a detailed consultation to get a complete picture of your health and lifestyle. As well as a full medical history,  I read your pulses, look at your tongue and palpate areas of pain and discomfort. Based on this information, I make a diagnosis and put together your personal treatment plan. I select acupuncture points based on your symptoms, which I needle using sterile needles. The needles come in sealed packs which are opened in front of you.  As treatment progresses different acupuncture points are added dependant on individual response, and so a course of treatment is purely individual.

What Does It Feel Like?

Acupuncture needle compared to a paper clip

As seen in the picture above, acupuncture needles are much finer than needles used for injections and blood tests. When the needle is inserted you may feel a tingling sensation or dull ache.

Is Acupuncture Safe?

Two Independent Surveys published in the British Medical Journal in 2001 (MacPherson et al, White et al) concluded that the risk of serious adverse reactions to acupuncture is very small in the hands of properly trained acupuncturists such as members of the BAcC.


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Hina Patel - Traditional AcupuncturistOur resident acupuncturist, Hina Patel is a registered member of the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC).  She is an experienced practitioner with over 17 years clinical experience. Hina is also a qualified researcher and conducted research into acupuncture at the School of Health and Related Research at the University of Sheffield for which she was awarded a higher research degree. Click here for her full profile

For more information about her acupuncture service please visit Hina’s website:  SheffieldAcupuncturePractice.co.uk