Western science posits that there are three main mechanisms for acupuncture’s effects:
1. Activation of opioid systems: Research has found that several types of opioids may be released into the central nervous system during acupuncture treatment, thereby reducing pain.
2. Changes in brain chemistry, sensation, and involuntary body functions: Studies have shown that acupuncture may alter brain chemistry by changing the release of neurotransmitters and neurohormones. Acupuncture also has been documented to affect the parts of the central nervous system related to sensation and involuntary body functions, such as immune reactions and processes whereby a person’s blood pressure, blood flow and body temperature are regulated.
3. Changes in blood flow: Acupuncture and Oriental medicine alters the circulation of blood to the affected area, resulting in removal of pain causing chemicals, and restoring normal function to the area being treated.
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