Magnets vs Needles – The Debate

The difference between acupuncture and acupressure is that acupuncture uses needles to stimulate an acupuncture point, whereas acupressure uses the finger tips or other blunt instrument. The insertion of acupuncture needles also needs to be much more precise as compared to the application of acupressure. The needle is very tiny and, as such, needs to be placed correctly to be beneficial. Acupressure can stimulate a larger area; therefore the provider can be less precise in his application. The risks associated with acupuncture are slightly greater because the needle pierces the skin and enters the body. Acupressure does not pierce the skin, so the risk of side effects is zero compared to those encountered during acupuncture.

The National Institute of Health has determined that both acupuncture and acupressure can be very effective for treating a variety of specific conditions.

The research is however anecdotal or condition-specific and some patients find that acupuncture is more effective for certain conditions, and some find that acupressure is more effective for the same conditions. Each individual responds differently.

Acupressure is more convenient in that it can be practiced just about anywhere at anytime by anyone. Acupuncture requires special needles and an intimate knowledge of point function and point location to be effective.

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