There is a lot of information circulating about acupuncture and its potential effects on alleviating the symptoms associated with “long COVID”. Acupuncture has been used for centuries to treat all sorts of illnesses and conditions, and there is some evidence to suggest that it may be a helpful treatment for people experiencing long COVID, which we’ll explore in the points below.
What is long COVID?
Long COVID is the term used to describe the experience of symptoms associated with COVID-19 for weeks or even months after initial infection. Symptoms usually last for at least two months, and manifest within three months from the onset of COVID-19.
The most common symptoms include fatigue, brain fog (struggling to remember things or concentrate properly), anxiety, depression, muscle weakness, changes to taste and smell, pain or tightness in the chest, joint pain, insomnia and problems with digestion. For some people, long COVID can be a debilitating condition that significantly impacts their quality of life.
How acupuncture can help alleviate the symptoms of long COVID
Given that long COVID is still a relatively new concept in the medical field, there is currently very little we know for certain in regards to treatment. This can be frustrating for people who are looking for ways to reduce the effects of long COVID in their system.
While studies are ongoing, there is evidence to suggest that acupuncture can help to alleviate the symptoms associated with long COVID. One study found that acupuncture was effective in reducing fatigue, anxiety, and depression in patients who had experienced COVID-19. Acupuncture has also been shown to boost immunity and reduce inflammation, both of which are thought to be helpful in managing long COVID.
Acupuncture works by inserting small needles into specific points on the body. This process essentially tricks our brains into thinking our body is under attack. The strategically placed needles stimulate the nervous system, which then releases chemicals in the brain that help to reduce pain and promote relaxation. In regards to long COVID, the implication is that a stronger immune system is better equipped to combat the symptoms and reduce their effect.
Certain “acupoints” help to relieve individual symptoms. For example, Acupoint 内关 (Nei Guan, PC 6) can alleviate chest pain/tightness by regulating heart Qi flow and opening up the chest. Meanwhile, Acupoint 足三里 (Zu San Li, ST36) regulates spleen and stomach energy Qi, and boosts immunity – this helps to combat fatigue.
What to expect during your acupuncture treatment for long COVID
If you’re considering acupuncture as a treatment for long COVID, it’s important to book with a licensed acupuncturist who has experience treating this condition. During your acupuncture session, you may experience a slight tingling or numbing sensation as the needles are inserted, but acupuncture is generally not painful. The needles are left in place for 20-30 minutes before being removed, and people typically report feeling more relaxed after their acupuncture treatment.
Book acupuncture treatment for long COVID today
Overall, acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment that may help you overcome the symptoms of long COVID. If nothing else, the treatment will help you feel less fatigued, which is important when battling the symptoms associated with long COVID.
At Eastern Therapies, we offer acupuncture treatments that are tailored to each client’s specific needs and condition, as well as massage therapy, myotherapy, laser treatments and more. Our qualified and experienced team operates from two well-equipped clinics – one in Bondi and one in Sydney CBD. Book a rejuvenating appointment at Eastern Therapies today.