Can acupuncture offer a solution to hair loss?
The answer to this question as to any other linked with alternative medicines is “yes and no”. when you look at acupuncture from a purely scientific viewpoint you have to have clear measurable evidence for it to be accepted in the mainstream. There are certainly patients out there who are more than willing to talk about their positive experiences with acupuncture but solid scientific proof is very hard to pin down.
But when you consider that the practice of acupuncture goes back in history 6000 years, there must be something that has kept it alive surely? If it did not in some way make patients feel better – it would have died out a long time ago. I suppose you have to take into account that it of course had its origins in a world where the paranormal was considered acceptable and there was no need for scientific clarity. But treatments must have had success as they do today on some level.
Sceptics would say that “medical success” is all in the mind. Any successes patients report back are due to a psychological effect. In other words, because they expect it to work, want it to work, or because they have spent a lot of money on it, they see healing which should not really be attributed to acupuncture itself in reality.
Die hard believers who take the treatments regularly talk about back relief, less migraines, a reduction in the pain of arthritis and stress etc.
I came across a course on the internet the other day on how to offer acupuncture for hair treatment. As a bit of a sceptic myself I immediately looked for holes in the argument. The article itself was not very reader friendly and if they wanted to blind me with the science of Chinese medicine then they certainly had that covered.
I decided to look elsewhere for pointers and found a neat little piece which agreed with me about my misgivings about acupuncture and hair loss. It was the British acupuncture site. There was no marketing hype or blurb here. Just straight facts. It made clear that any direct solutions from acupuncture were unlikely. However, it did say that in some areas of hair loss there was an area that it could possible help with:
However, hair loss can be associated with other conditions like Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) in women and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) in both sexes, and if this is the case, there are approaches in both conventional and Chinese medicine which may prove beneficial. Clearly the Chinese medicine ones will be looking at the symptom in the context of other symptoms which someone may have, and also in the context of understanding the body as a system of energy, or ‘qi’, whose flow, rhythms and balance have been disturbed.
Broadly speaking what this piece was insinuating I believe is that acupuncture can help with overall health and vitality of the hair which in turn in many cases will lead to a reduction in hair loss.
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