Neurological disorders are diseases of the brain and spine and the nerves that connect them. There are more than 600 diseases of the nervous system, such as brain tumors, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease and stroke as well as less familiar ones such as fronto-temporal dementia.
The nervous system is a complex, sophisticated system that regulates and coordinates the body’s activities. Nerve pain can arise from trauma, inflammation, stroke, disease, infection, nerve degeneration, exposure to toxic chemicals and nutrient deficiencies.
Nerve pain is usually a sharp, shooting pain or a constant burning sensation. Typically occurring in the same location with each episode, it can often be traced along the nerve pathway. Sometimes weakness or impaired function in the affected area occurs and may be overly sensitive and/or numb.
Acupuncture can frequently provide relief from several neurological disorders, including:
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) — ALS is a neurological disease that destroys the nerve cells that invigorate the muscles.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome — Also known as median nerve entrapment, it occurs when swelling or irritation of the nerve or tendons in the carpal tunnel results in pressure on the median nerve.
Headaches — Headaches that can be treated with acupuncture include migraines, tension headaches, headaches occurring around the menstrual cycle, sinus headaches and stress-related headaches.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) — Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that progressively damages the central nervous system.
Myasthenia Gravis — This is a neuromuscular disorder causing muscles under voluntary control to tire and become easily fatigued.
Parkinson’s Disease (PD) – This is a neurodegenerative disorder that affects predominately dopamine-producing (“dopaminergic”) neurons in a specific area of the brain called substantia nigra.
Peripheral Neuropathy — This presents as damage to the peripheral nervous system, which transmits information from the brain and spinal cord to every other part of the body. This kind of neuropathy can be caused by diabetes and often affects the feet.
Trigeminal Neuralgia — This presents as facial pain and is sometimes called Tic Douloureux. It affects the trigeminal nerve, which is responsible for impulses of touch, pain, pressure and temperature sent to the brain from the face, jaw and gums.
Acupuncture and Oriental medicine have been found to be effective as a conjunctive therapy for many neurological disorders, and in treating the associated pain and inflammation.