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World Mental Health Day 2015 – The Pros and Cons of Acupuncture

October 10th, 2015

Acupuncture is our ‘Therapy of the Month’ and for World Mental Health Day 2015 one of our acupuncturists, Richard Graham, talks about the pros and cons of the therapy in treating mental health.

‘I have found in practice that acupuncture can be helpful in dealing with emotional and mental health issues. Unfortunately my experience is that it requires a frequency of treatment that is unacceptable in our society.

In China, there is a lot of research that has been done on the effects of acupuncture on a range of neurological conditions and mental health with encouraging results. The stringency of the research has always been an issue with Western observers, but never the less the research is optimistic and encouraging.

The drawback from our cultural point of view is that treatment, in China, generally occurs on a daily basis for between 20-30 days. In our culture this makes it financially implausible for a patient to undertake and difficult to research.

I believe the only way forward would be to treat between 20-30 patients at a time, on a daily basis, which would require a lot of commitment from the patients. The acupuncturist would need a lot of space for this and there would need to be a lot of interest in the project, but this would keep the cost down.

A system of self treatment at home could also provide a solution. After all if diabetics can treat themselves without attending a clinic there are a number of ways carefully selected acupuncture patients could do the same.

In my experience acupuncture works for mental health issues, but it needs a frequency of treatment that most individuals cannot afford and an attitude to treatment practicalities that needs to change.’

Richard Graham is a member of the British Medical Acupuncture Society, a registered physiotherapist and has taught as a Faculty member at the College of Traditional Acupuncture, Warwickshire.

If you would like to know more about Richard’s work or make an appointment then visit his page on our website here.

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