Conventional Acupuncture involves the use of single use, pre-sterilised, disposable needles of varying widths, lengths and materials that pierce the skin at the Acupuncture points. The Physiotherapist will determine the locations of the Acupuncture points, based upon the assessment of the cause of the imbalance. A number of needles may be used at each treatment and these are typically left in position for some 20-30 minutes before being removed. Trigger point Acupuncture may also be used to facilitate relaxation in specific muscles following trauma such as whiplash injury; for longer term unresolved muscle pain such as repetitive strain injury (RSI) or as a means to obtain increased muscle length in order to aid stretch and rehabilitation such as sports injuries . Here the needle is placed into the affected muscle until it is felt to relax under the needle and then removed. Trigger point needling is often much quicker and therefore does not require the 20-30 minute treatment time.
The vast majority of acupuncture treatments in the UK is for musculoskeletal (physiotherapy requiring) conditions. AACP members are Chartered Physiotherapists who had full medical training and in addition many have worked at least for one year with patients in a hospital setting or in private practice, before starting their acupuncture learning so they are fully aware of the physiology (functioning) of the body through their physiotherapy study and practical work.