Does it Hurt?
Well, no, not really. The needles are hair thin, first of all. It feels nothing like getting your blood drawn which is way more uncomfortable. Sometimes you might feel a little pinch on some of the points when a needle is inserted, and others you won't feel at all. Once they are in the proper place, you probably won't feel them there. You might feel a sensation such as warmth, heaviness, or even a sensation in another part of your body. These are simply signs that the needles are doing their job. Sometimes a needle might feel sharp or burning and if so, just let us know and we'll take it out or readjust it. It might just be up against a blood vessel or may have gone in at a weird angle. We want you to be able to relax and nothing should be painful. Most people fall asleep during their treatment and usually the first time someone experiences their first needle, the response is, "Oh! That was nothing!"
Of course, some people (like me) are more sensitive than others, but again, if anything is uncomfortable, let your practitioner know.
How Far in Does The Needle Go?
That just depends on where we're putting it. If a needle is going into your wrist, generally it will not go in very far, but where there is more muscle or fat a needle can go deeper. When I treat someone's hip for example, a could go up to a couple inches depending on the size of the patient, but typically, most of your needles will only go in a couple millimeters.
What Can Acupuncture Treat?
Most people associate acupuncture with the treatment of various types of pain, which is probably what we treat the most of. But acupuncture can treat a whole range of health issues such as allergies, fertility, pregnancy, digestive problems, anxiety, insomnia, autoimmune disorders, and more. Click around on the Conditions page of my website for more!
How does Acupuncture Work?
Acupuncture involves inserting fine, sterile needles into specific points found along the body’s energetic pathways. These pathways, often called meridians, are the conduit in which Qi (pronounced “chee”) flows throughout the body.
Qi courses through every cell, muscle, tissue, and organ of the body. While sounding magical and mysterious, the concept and action of Qi has been studied scientifically. It is linked to many physiological actions, particularly those associated with the nervous and circulatory system. It is important that our Qi is flowing in the proper way so that all of our body systems are in harmony and working together for our optimal health.
How Many treatments Will I Need?
That will depend on a few factors. If you recently experienced an injury, it might just take a couple of treatments. If you're coming for something more chronic, it will probably take several. It also depends on your overall health. People in good health will probably respond more quickly to acupuncture treatment compared to someone with more health issues.
Does Insurance Cover It?
Sometimes insurance does cover acupuncture treatment. You'll have to check with your carrier to see if it's covered in your plan. Not all acupuncturists accept insurance though, so you will have to find out if yours does before scheduling an appointment. Acupuncture is a covered expense for health accounts such as HSAs, HRAs, and FSAs.
How Often Should I come?
Typically you'll come once or twice a week in the beginning of your treatment and decrease the frequency as your problem resolves until you don't have to come anymore. Many of my patients like to come once a month or once a season for tune ups after their initial course of treatment. It makes them feel good!
Can I come if I feel Healthy?
Absolutely! Acupuncture is a great form of preventative medicine. Also, in almost all of us, there's some aspect of our health that can be improved, even if we feel fine.
How Should I Prepare For My First Treatment?
First, make sure you've had something to eat before your treatment. You don't have to have something immediately before, but it's best not to come on a completely empty stomach. There have been occasions when somebody didn't have anything to eat that day, and then wound up feeling a little woozy or left with a mild headache afterwards.
Wear something comfortable. You usually won't have to disrobe for your session, but if an article of clothing needs to be removed, we'll make sure you're draped with a sheet or blanket.
Fill out any paperwork that was given to you by your acupuncturist and bring it in, or arrive a little early so you can fill it out at the office. Give yourself enough time, some of our forms can be a little lengthy.
What Should I Expect After Treatment?
Most patients feel relaxed with a general sense of well being after a treatment. Some people feel a little euphoric. On rare occasion, but it does happen, pain symptoms may feel a little worse after a treatment, but with these situations, the patient feels significantly less pain the day after treatment. Also, occasionally pain will move to another location. This is actually a good sign. This movement is better than stubborn, fixed pain. Changes like these mean that your body has responded to the treatment.
How Many Needles Will You Use and Where Will You Put Them?
The number of needles I use depends on what I'm treating, but somewhere in the vicinity of 10 to 20 is probably safe to say. Most of the needles will go in your arms and legs, and a few might go in head, abdomen, back, or wherever else you are having an issue. It is pretty normal to have an acupuncture point in your hand to treat something in your head.
I Want To Try Acupuncture, What Should I do Next?
Call or email me! 617-308-6620 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We will set up your consultation and first treatment and then come up with a treatment plan suitable for your needs. If I haven't answered any other question you might have, feel free to contact me as well. Hope to hear from you soon!