Cosmetic Acupuncture: A Potential Alternative to Botox

While most people prefer to look their best even as they age, not everyone is prepared to go to extremes to keep themselves looking as young as possible. A lot of people prefer, for example, to avoid going under the knife and getting plastic surgery. Some people are willing to get injections of Botox or other fillers to help give them a more youthful look, but others would prefer to avoid injecting chemicals and would like a more natural alternative. This is where cosmetic acupuncture comes in.

The Basics

Cosmetic acupuncture, like any type of acupuncture, involves having multiple thin needles injected by a trained professional in specific points on the body, where they'll stay for between 30 and 45 minutes before being removed. Although this treatment is meant to improve the look of the face, helping to improve the color and the glow of the skin and minimize any fine lines or wrinkles, the acupuncturist may place needles in other parts of the body as well, including the hands and feet. This is because in traditional Chinese medicine, different pressure points around the body affect different organs and cause different effects in the body.

Before treatment, you'll undergo an examination and need to answer numerous questions about your health, habits and medical history to give the practitioner the necessary information to get the best results and do so in a safe way.

Potential Mechanisms

Sometimes fine lines and wrinkles are more obvious because people are tense, so the relaxation provided by the acupuncture can help minimize these lines. Also, the needles cause a tiny amount of damage under the skin, causing the body to increase blood flow and perhaps the flow of endorphins as well. Increased circulation can give the skin a rosier glow.

Some practitioners claim that this microdamage also causes the body to increase collagen production in the face, which helps to keep the skin tighter and more elastic, although others doubt that the potential increase in collagen would be enough to make a significant difference in looks. Either way, many find that during the course of the treatment their skin does look and feel better than before, although the effects are not as dramatic as a facelift and, at least for some people, not as dramatic as they might get with facial injections.

Things to Consider

Some people find that the needles sting a little as they go in, but this is a relatively low pain treatment with few, if any, potential side effects when using a licensed practitioner who has specific training in cosmetic acupuncture. Treatments also aren't particularly cheap, with each treatment typically costing somewhere between $175 and $300 and most people needing somewhere between six and 10 treatments for best results, with regular maintenance treatments after that. Results from the initial round of treatment can last for up to three months.

To learn more about the process, contact services like The Herban Alchemist.