When you sustain an injury such as a sprained ankle, your natural response is to wonder if there are any ways to make it heal faster. While there is no substitute for the RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) treatment, a growing number of people seek acupuncture, inclding laser acupuncture, for ankle sprains in Chicago as an add-on therapy.
There are several ways that acupuncture helps to heal a sprained ankle quickly. It sounds strange, but acupuncture may partially work by stimulating some aspects of the short-term inflammatory response. This initiates healing by clearing out damaged cell and tissue parts, and sending blood flow to the area. Blood flow means oxygen and nutrients, which your cells need more of to repair injury sites.
On the other hand, laser cupuncture also reduces longer-term inflammatory signals that promote tissue damage. These damaging inflammatory signals cause pain, too, so acupuncture can relieve pain through this same mechanism.
In the traditional explanations, traditional or laser acupuncture stimulates the flow of Qi (universal life energy) and blood to organs and tissues. By both supporting the injury site and overall organ function, it may create an environment that promotes faster healing. Acupuncture can clear areas of stagnation, too, which are common in injuries.
Clinical studies back up why many patients seek acupuncture and other types of Chinese medicine for sprained ankles. One paper even showed an impressive success rate, where all 31 treated patients had significant relief of their injury symptoms compared to just one in the no-treatment group.
In this paper, six of the treated patients saw their injuries mostly resolve, which was described as the “cure rate”. The rates in others included 29/41 having acupuncture compared to 15/41 receiving RICE; and 18/27 people receiving acupuncture compared to 9/30 having infrared therapy.
Acupuncture for ankle injury may not only help to speed up healing, but also reduce pain in the meantime. Research finds that it can work just as well as RICE or massage, and provide greater benefits for pain relief when combined with these. Laser acupuncture not only helps to relieve pain by calming inflammation, but also by stimulating the production of our own natural painkillers and regulating nervous system function.
At Life Balance Clinic in Glenview, IL, Dr. Vadim Dekhtyar, DACM offers acupuncture for sprained ankles and other complaints. With over 30 years of experience, he can uncover the underlying obstacles to healing for your unique situation and provide the right treatment plan. Contact us here to learn more or book an appointment.