Acupuncture is one important modality used within Traditional Chinese Medicine to promote healing, improve functioning and prevent health problems. Very thin needles are inserted at precise acupuncture points on the surface of the body. These acupuncture points are located along channels of energy called meridians which run in patterns throughout the body. Meridians can be likened to rivers of energy that irrigate and nourish the tissues of the body. From a TCM view, illnesses manifest as obstructions of energy along these rivers causing a back up in the flow. This back up creates a dam at certain points and restricts flow at other points, both of which manifest as uncomfortable physical, mental and/or emotional symptoms. When the acupuncture needles are inserted at specific points, the obstructions in the meridians are unblocked, the dams are released and flow is reestablished. Acupuncture treatments are thus highly effective for stimulating the body's natural ability regain and maintain balance. Problematic symptoms automatically subside as flow and balance is restored.