Edmonton Acupuncture Center  
Edmonton Acupuncture Center
Phone: 780-416-2828
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Chronic Pain

Misdiagnosed chronic pain is often considered incurable and people suffering from chronic pain symptoms for more than 9 months are many times told they must simply live with it and seek pain "management" methods, such as pain drugs and psychological therapy.

Did you know that the majority of chronic pain is not due to structural interference (nerve impingement; something pushing on a sensory nerve or nerves causing pain) but is actually caused by sensory-motor amnesia (SMA). A condition in which the sensory-motor neurons of the voluntary cortex have lost some portion of their ability to control all or some of the muscles of the body. The body's unconscious reflexes constantly contract muscles at a programmed rate and is powerless to relax these muscles below the programmed rate, it has lost the ability to do so.

The pathological process by which sensory motor amnesia occurs includes: (1) the trauma reflex, (2) the startle reflex, and (3) the Landau response.

The trauma reflex is the reflex of pain avoidance, it occurs as a protective muscular response to severe injury. For example, following hernia surgery, the abdominal muscles on the traumatized, herniated side will usually be in constant contraction. If the left knee is in long-term pain, the person will avoid applying body weight on the left leg and become noticeably pulled to the right side in scoliosis. These are examples of SMA caused by the trauma reflex.
The startle reflex occurs as a stress response to threatening or stressful situations whether actual or imagined. If the threatening situation triggering the startle reflex occurs often enough and strongly enough, the muscular contractions of the reflex become chronically programmed, resulting in tense continual muscle contractions of the neck, upper back, shoulders, thigh adductors and more. When the back and surrounding ribcage muscles are continually tense due to a chronic startle reflex pattern, an indirect effect is shallow breathing and poor circulation.

The Landau response is an arousal response that occurs in situations where immediate action is demanded of the individual, for example responding to the ring of a cell phone, a knock on the door, a response to a demand et cetera. This response action contracts the posterior muscles of the back in preparation for movement forward. Common muscles affected are the central extensors of the spine, the rhomboids between the shoulder blades, the lower gluteus medius/piriformis, and hamstrings of the legs. The constant repetition of these situations and the Landau response makes these muscular contractions chronic.

As a result muscles held chronically in partial contraction will (1) become tense and painful; (2) become weak with constant exertion; (3) cause clumsiness because of their inability to coordinate together with overall bodily movements; (4) cause a constant energy drain of the body; (5) create postural imbalances and poor weight distribution that will cause secondary pain typically mistaken for arthritis, bursitis, herniated disks, and so on.

Acupuncture remedies this sensory motor loop chronic pain pattern where groups of sensory and motor nerves keep firing by reeducating the voluntary sensory-motor cortex. The cortex must be reminded sensorially of what it has forgotten so that, once again, it has full motor control of the muscular areas affected. When it does so, the symptoms mentioned above disappear, and the chronic, medically incurable situation is alleviated.

Acupuncture will immediately reveal whether the chronic pain is neuropathic pain (groups of sensory and motor nerves keep firing without any direct trauma at all) or structural (a direct neural impingement, i.e. something is pushing on the sensory nerve or nerves, causing the pain). Why is this so? Neuropathic pain responds immediately to acupuncture and structural pain does not.

Why do some structural back surgeries not alleviate back pain? Because in these people, the pain is due to nerves being stuck in the sensory motor loop and the structure of the back is not the cause of the problem.

If four acupuncture treatments fail to reduce the pain at all, even for an hour or so, then a direct structural neural impingement is most likely causing the pain, and we refer these patients out to their doctors for further testing.

If you are suffering from some kind of chronic discomfort and have given up hope as to its cause, please give our clinic a call and schedule an acupuncture consultation for further information.

At Acupuncture Care Holistic Centre we treat a wide variety of conditions. Listed above is one of the most common ailments patients come to us with, we deal with many more conditions besides what is listed. To learn more about the individual treatments, select a condition to the right or call us at (780) 416-2828.

Do You Suffer From Chronic, Neck, Shoulder or Back Pain?

Are you one of millions of people who suffer from daily pain in the neck, shoulders or low back? Do you experience tension, tingling or numbness in these areas or in your arms or legs?

Does your pain tend to come and go or is it constant? How long have you suffered with it and how frequently? Has it tended to get worse over time? What is it like for you when it is at its very worst? What does it restrict you from doing? How does it affect your family, your co-workers, your hobbies and your quality of life?

Does it frustrate you that you’ve tried many things only to achieve temporary relief at best? Would you like to be finally rid of your pain?

Pain is a very common problem caused by a variety of reasons. Acupuncture treatment for pain is varied and based largely on what is causing the suffering. Available treatments include acupuncture along selected meridian points, which are energy pathways throughout the body, along with cupping therapy, moxibustion, massage and Chinese herbs. There is an alternative to surgery and drug therapy.

At Acupuncture Care Holistic Centre we treat a wide variety of conditions. Listed above is one of the most common ailments patients come to us with, we deal with many more conditions besides what is listed. To learn more about the individual treatments, select a condition to the right or call us at (780) 416-2828



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