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The practice of acupuncture and moxibustion is an important part of traditional Chinese modicine used to prevent and treat disease. For thousands of years the Chinese people have appreciated it for its nonpharmaceutical treatment, simple application, wide range of use, good curative effect, and low cost.

As part of Chinese science and culture, acupuncture and moxibustion have long been known to the world as a result of cultural exchange between China and other countries. A global interest in acupuncture and moxibustion and special enthusiasm for the subject has grown in the recent years.

Acupuncture is not a one-time procedure, though. You will need to see your acupunctuist once or twice a week for a series of weeks or possibly even months. A series of up to 12 treatments is normal. Each appointment will take about an hour and should include time for an exam and discussion of your current condition, things you can do yourself at home and any questions you may have.

History

Acupuncture is an important invention of the Chinese which originated as early as in the clan commune period of the primitive society. The activities of human beings appeared in China about 1,7000,000 years ago. It was about 100,000 years ago that China entered the clan commune period which lasted till 4,000 years ago. In the ancient literature there were many legends about the origin of acupuncture such as Fu Xi's creation of the therapeutic techniques with stone needles, and Huang Di's invention of acupuncture and moxibustion. The about mentioned Fu Xi and Huang Di's in legend actually are the representatives of the clan commune of primitive society.

In the classics of two thousand years ago, it was frequently cited that the acupuncture instruments were made of stone and were named "bian" stone. For example, in "Commentary on the Spring and Autumn Annads", there is a paragraph in historical records for 550 B.B. saying:"Praise pleasant to hear that does an ill turn is worse than advice unpleasant to hear that acts like a stone." Fu Qian in the second century explained that "stone" here meant "bian stone". Quan Yuanqi who lived around the 5th-6th centuries pointed out:"bian stone is an ancient appliance for external treatment and was known by three names:1. needle stone;2.bian stone; 3. arrow-headed stone. In fact, they are the same thing. Because there was no iron casting in ancient times, the needles were made of stone. In China, a "bian" stone needle 4.5 cun long was discovered in the New Stone Age ruins in Duolun County of Inner Mongolia. At one end, it is oval shaped with a semicircularedge used for incising boils and abscesses, and the other end, it is pyramid shaped with a square base used for bloodletting. Two more "bian" stones were discovered as funerary objects in a late New Stone Age grave in Rizzhao County of Shandong Province. They are 8.3 cm and 9.1 cm in length respectively, with three-edged and cone-shaped ends used for bloodletting and regulating qi circulation. The discovered relics of "bian" stone have provided powerful evidence that acupuncture originated early in the primitive society.

Three thousand years ago in the Shang Dynasty the hieroglyphs of acupuncture and moxibustion appeared in the inscriptions on bones and tortoise shells. Because of the development of bronze casting techniques there appeared bronze casting techniques there appeared bronze medical needle. But bian stone was still used as the main tool for treating diseases. …

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