patients find treatments very relaxing which brings on a
feeling of wellbeing.
will find yourself relaxed in the sacred space of the
treatment room, the light will be soft and soothing music
will reach your ears allowing you to drift into a peaceful
will usually remain fully clothed or dressed in a gown
patients may feel a slight sensation when the needles are
inserted but the needles are tiny and designed to be
painless. Nothing like injections.
one-time use sterile, disposable needles are used.
treatments require the use of moxa which is a warming herb
called Artemisia Vulgaris (Mugwort) used to tonify Qi and
blood. It is used in raw form, rolled into small cones and
lit on Acupuncture points to prepare the point for
needling. Someone once described this to me as lighting a
fire in the fireplace before inviting your guests for
dinner. Sometimes a moxa stick is used to warm the points
on a stagnant area indirectly.
During most treatments some structural integration will be
included to help to align the body and ground the
treatment to assist in the healing process.
What can I expect during my Acupuncture treatments?
average session usually lasts 45-75 minutes; your first
appointment usually takes 1.5 to 2 hours. The number of
treatments depends, of course, on your condition and how
well you respond. For some chronic or complex problems,
you may need a 1 to 2 sessions a week for several months.
Some conditions require maintenance therapy, just as they
do in Western medicine.
youíve had bad experiences with shots and drawing blood,
acupuncture will be different. Acupuncture needles are
smooth and solid; hypodermic needles are hollow with
cutting edges. This makes insertion much less painful and
reduces the likelihood of bruising.
may feel something akin to a mosquito bite, or perhaps a
dull ache, numbness, a tingling or a warm feeling.
During most treatments, the needles are inserted then
immediately removed but for some treatments needles are
left in for 10-45 minutes. Once the needles are in place
-you probably wonít feel anything. However, you need to
stay relatively still and relaxed, since you could feel
achy or tight in the needle spots if you move suddenly or
you tighten your muscles.
you are uncomfortable, tell your Acupuncture Physician. If
you feel faint, dizzy, nauseated, become short of breath
or break into a cold sweat, speak up. Itís often a
function of nervousness, but your practitioner can
readjust or withdraw the needles if necessary.
Acupuncture, performed correctly, has almost no side
effects. You may notice that your original symptoms may
seem to be aggravated after the first treatment; this is
called the Law of Cure. You may notice changes in
appetite, sleep, bowel or urination patterns. Although
rare, you may also have a little bleeding and/bruising
where the needles were inserted.
of these side effects indicate the acupuncture is starting
to work, and they donít last for long. If they do, talk to
your regular health care professional and your Acupuncture
Physician. Often, the first one or two treatments may
leave you deeply relaxed or even mildly disoriented. You
should also take precautions while driving, especially
after the first several sessions.
Emotionally speaking, most patients feel relaxed,
energetic or even cheerful after treatment.
How many treatments will I need?
person is unique and individually evaluated. A detailed
treatment plan is devised after a lengthy, detailed
Except for serious conditions most individuals begin with
1 treatment a week for 6-8 weeks.
Treatments usually take 45-75 minutes.
Patients should begin to see improvement within 3-5
treatments, most experience changes after their first
Length of time in treatment depends on type, severity, and
duration of the condition.
symptoms improve fewer visits are needed.
Frequency of treatment will be reevaluated in 6-9 weeks
and sessions usually begin to be spaced out further apart
until a patient ideally is seen seasonally or as imbalance
What happens when I come to the office?
During your first visit, you will have the opportunity to
tell us what you would like to address with acupuncture
and/or Chinese herbs. Many times just telling your story
will help us both understand you better and your needs.
Occasionally, we will have time for a short treatment
during the first visit, but more commonly we begin to use
needles with the second visit.
first session differs from subsequent treatments in that a
thorough diagnostic interview is conducted in order to
evaluate a patientís needs and to determine a diagnosis
and treatment plan specifically suited to that individual.
interview is usually from 1 1/2 Ė2 hours.
brief physical exam is also conducted in order to gather
as much information as possible and note any physical
use several methods of observation in order to best meet
the needs of each individual including pulse and tongue
Subsequent sessions usually last from 45-75 minutes and
are usually done with the patient lying on the treatment
table in their own clothes or a robe provided.
treatment usually consists of the use of warming moxa (an
herb sometimes used to nourish and prepare the point for
needling) and the insertion of acupuncture needles into
specific points chosen for this particular individual.
Do all Acupuncture Physicians work the same way?
Throughout history, Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs have
undergone many changes and there are many approaches to
differences are in diagnostic techniques while some
differences are in treatment techniques.
important thing to remember is that the basic objective
remains constant with all practitioners. The goal is to
balance the system, remove blocks and achieve equilibrium
so that the body can begin to heal itself.
Does Insurance cover Acupuncture?
many insurance policies cover acupuncture but individual
policies differ so you must consult with your
representative regarding reimbursement.
are due at the time of service but insurance reimbursement
forms will be provided for you to submit to your