About three years ago I began having excruciating shoulder pain. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong, I had not injured it, it just started hurting and got worse. I went to see an Orthopedic who took x-rays and examined my shoulder, he diagnosed me with inflammation. I never knew inflammation could hurt so much, no amount of ibuprofen or acetaminophen helped at all. So, when he offered a cortisone shot I gladly accepted, well if you’ve had a cortisone shot you know it’s not painless either. But it seemed to work, the inflammation subsided, and I felt better within a few days. A month or so later it returned and back to the orthopedic I went for another shot. After the second shot, I started thinking about how this shot was just masking the problem, it made the pain go away but it wasn’t truly resolving the inflammation.
A month or so later when the pain returned someone suggested I try acupuncture. I wasn’t thrilled with the idea, but the pain was terrible, so I was willing to try it and my insurance covered most of my visit with a small copay. It took about 6 weekly visits, but the inflammation subsided. My acupuncturist also spent time explaining things I could do to help with the inflammation like using a heating pad, reducing my sugar intake and taking turmeric supplements. Since I got the inflammation under control I have continued with acupuncture once a month. I’ve only had one flare up in my shoulder since starting the regular acupuncture. When it happened, I immediately started the things my Acupuncturist taught me to do on my own and called for an extra session to reduce the inflammation.
If you are wondering what it feels like to get acupuncture, it rarely hurts to get the needles, they are very thin I don’t usually feel them at all. Once the needles are placed, I get to relax for almost an hour, truthfully, I usually fall asleep! It may not be for everyone, but I encourage you to try it and see if it helps you. As a Mom of teenagers I don’t get much time for self-care, but I make my acupuncture appointment every month and my shoulders thank me!