If you’re one of the 50 million people in the United States who suffer from seasonal allergies, you’re probably familiar with the sniffling, sneezing, itchy eyes and other symptoms that make you feel miserable every spring or fall.When these symptoms strike, you probably make the trek to your local pharmacy to mull over which over-the-counter medication you’d like to try this time. You might wonder if there is an alternative or additional treatment you can take to get rid of your allergies. If this is you, then acupuncture might be the answer.
What is Acupuncture and Why Should You Use It?
Acupuncture is an ancient technique that originates from China. It involves the careful placement of needles within a person’s skin at various important points in the body. Sound painful? It’s not! The needles are so thin that most people only experience mild discomfort during acupuncture treatments.Non-traditional alternatives to western medicine have been picking up steam amongst people who would like to reduce or eliminate the number of medications or medical treatments that they receive. Acupuncture is an affordable option for treatment with few serious side effects. This eastern alternative to medicine could be the answer to many common health issues, including allergies.
How Can Acupuncture Help Allergies?
All of those annoying symptoms you get with allergies happen when your body’s immune system decides to jump in and fight against allergens you’ve been exposed to. There are many over-the-counter and prescription allergy medications available to relieve symptoms. You can even undergo a series of shots from your doctor to take care of your allergies. What’s the problem with these treatments? Many of them can leave you with unpleasant side effects such as drowsiness, dry mouth, and nausea. Sometimes the treatments aren’t effective in reducing or ridding you of your symptoms.Recent studies suggest that patients who undergo acupuncture for relief from their allergies may be able to reduce or even get rid of the need for their medications. Practitioners of acupuncture believe that the treatment works because it affects the immune system and can help your body recognize the allergens that cause your immune system to go haywire. This means the antibodies responsible for your allergic reactions could stop overreacting and allow you to live your life allergy free.
Are There Any Risks to Acupuncture?
There aren’t many risks to having acupuncture treatments if you go to a certified practitioner. You may be a little sore from the needles after your session. There can also be mild bruising or bleeding where the needles are inserted. An experienced acupuncturist will reduce the risk of more serious complications such as injuries to your internal organs or infections caused by reusing needles.Consult your doctor and talk to your acupuncture practitioner before undergoing acupuncture treatments. There are some conditions that may increase your risks of complications. These conditions include pregnancy, being on blood thinners, having a bleeding disorder, or having a pacemaker.If your allergies are driving you crazy and you’re not having any luck treating them with traditional western medicine, acupuncture may help. Used by itself or alongside more traditional western treatment methods, it can offer relief from misery-inducing allergy symptoms and allow you to enjoy the great outdoors.