If you've heard that acupuncture can actually reduce the signs of aging and reduce wrinkles, you may have heard correctly.
Acupuncture on the face works to internally stimulate the production of collagen and elastin. This is important because as we age, fibroblasts, or the cells responsible for the production of collagen and elastin, don't function as well as they used to.
Once collagen and elastin begin producing at a slower rate, the skin can't repair itself as easily. In fact, as the dermis loses 20 percent to 80 percent of its thickness over time, your skin becomes "mature".
How Acupuncture Can Treat Aging Skin
Acupuncture manipulates the connective tissue in the face, as it can actually be stuck in various places and cause it to lose its shape.
According to Sarah Norvilas, a licensed acupuncturist in Beverly Hills, this loss in mobility can negatively impact the skin and cause thickening. The secret is to get the connective tissue moving again (you can also do this with a quartz facial roller), and wildly enough, the face can retake some shape it originally was made to have after successful treatment.
When acupuncture needles are inserted to the skin, it causes a micro-trauma. This then inspires a natural immune response to repair the micro-trauma. When this happens it creates a boost in the most important elements we all tend to lose as we age.
Did You Know Your Face is a Micro-System for Your body?
The science of acupuncture realizes that your face is a micro-system for your body. Each region of your face corresponds to a different organ. For example, the forehead is associated with the stomach, the chin with hormones, the area below the eyes with the kidneys, and the space between your eyebrows to the liver.
An acupuncturist sees the face as a map and works to treat specific parts of the body to make them healthy and whole. Once their values improve, so does skin condition.
What to Expect During an Acupuncture Facial
Each and every person has different challenges associated with their skin. So, as you go into a facial acupuncture session, you can expect that your acupuncturist will develop a protocol specifically for your needs.
As you meet with your therapist, make sure to ask questions and be clear as to what you want to accomplish. A good therapist will see what you need and explain how your treatment will work.
A session usually lasts for about an hour and includes a mixture of needles on the face and various spots on the body. As mentioned above, an acupuncturist sees skin issues as a part of a more systemic problem, so your therapist will work to treat that bodily challenge as well as use needles on the face.
Once needles are inserted, they will stay in from between 20-30 minutes on average. During this time, it's best to relax and be patient.
Yes, it can be a bit daunting to think of needles in your skin, but you'll most likely be amazed at how relaxing and rejuvenating it can be.
Many practitioners end a session with gentle facial cupping or soft tissue massage. It gets circulation flowing and helps nurture your facial tissues, cells, and skin.
According to most therapists, it takes about 10 sessions to really see a difference. You may want to consider two treatments per week for five to eight weeks for best results.