Beating The Winter Blues

Winter can be a difficult period for many of us. Lack of sunlight causes depletion in our Vitamin D stores affecting our vitality and mental health. A portion of the population suffer with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which results in low mood and fatigue. Many of my patients use acupuncture to keep their bodies and minds in balance, often continuing treatment on a maintenance basis after their initial symptoms have been helped.

Acupuncture has been shown to elevate the brains ‘feel good’ chemicals- beta-endorphins – the lack of which are linked to many forms of depression and anxiety. Over 20 years of practice has repeatedly shown me how helpful this can be to my patients. Acupuncture works by the insertion of extremely fine needles into specific points on the body, this then allows the bodies own inherent healing mechanisms to take affect. Over 2000 years old, it is now recommended by the World Health Organisation and the NHS for a variety of ailments and conditions. Alongside a good diet, exercise and plenty of rest (winter is a time of hibernation) we can feel renewed again when we finally enter spring.

If you’d like any more information or would like to book an appointment with me please contact the clinic for an appointment.

Paracetamol is ineffective at treating back pain and osteoarthritis despite being a recommended treatment

The headlines this month “Paracetamol is ineffective at treating back pain and osteoarthritis despite being a recommended treatment, a group of Australian researchers has warned” will come as no surprise to the hundreds of our patients who have tried the drug and found it provided little relief for their back pain.

The research published in the British Medical Journal is a review of 13 clinical trials and shows that paracetamol for back pain does not reduce disability or improve quality of life. In the light of this the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) will review its guidelines on the use of paracetamol for back pain which it currently recommends.

Dr Christian Mallen from Keele University has correctly pointed out that treatment options other than drugs should be the “cornerstone” of the management of such conditions. NHS Choices underline this by stating that there is there is good evidence that osteopathy is effective for the treatment of persistent lower back pain.

Research shows that exercise is important in the management of back pain and the Charity BackCare recommend combining exercise with manual treatment. Acupuncture is also recommended for chronic low back so it’s really good to see that the integrated approach we have been offering at the clinic for over 30 years is now being shown to be the right one.