1) What is acupuncture? Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine is a thousands year old practice that has stood the test of time and has been proven by controlled trials to be an effective treatment for many conditions. Sterile, single use, solid stainless steel (or gold) needles that are very thin ( much thinner than what most people think of when they hear the word needles) are inserted only a few millimeters into the skin to effect change in different parts of the body. The ultimate goal is to bring the body back into a state of balance so it can heal itself. Non-insertive techniques are available for younger patients and those we are unable to treat with standard methods. Chinese herbal medicine is used to continue your treatment at home and to further enhance the healing process. Both acupuncture and Chinese herbs help balance the body and allow it to heal from within.
2) Does it hurt???? The needles used are very thin and while there may be an occasional (but rare) pinch upon insertion, there should be no pain. You may feel a warmth, tingling, dull ache or heavy sensation indicating the body is balancing itself, or you may feel nothing at all which is ok, the body is still working hard to heal!
3) Why should I try it? Do you have pain, stress, sleepless nights, painful/irregular periods, injuries, anxiety, stress (insert your own concern here)...then you need acupuncture! Even if you think you have nothing wrong, give us a try. Acupuncture helps many of the conditions we are told are "normal" or that we "just have to live with". You might be pleasantly surprised by the results.
4) How should I prepare for my visit? You will be most comfortable during your treatment wearing loose fitting clothing that allows access to various parts of the body. We have drapes available for your comfort and privacy when needed. Also, avoid wearing heavy scents for those who may be chemically sensitive and make sure to have a light meal (but no alcohol!) before your treatment.
5) How many treatments will I need? Generally speaking, the more chronic a condition is, the longer it will take to treat. And the more acute the condition is, the shorter it will take to treat. So, a chronic condition may need treatments twice a week for several weeks or longer to see any changes and an acute condition may be alleviated in as few as one to three sessions. Your acupuncturist will discuss your treatment options with you.
6) Should I tell my healthcare provider? Yes! Spread the word of your good health through acupuncture. Plus, it's important to let your healthcare provider know all the modalities of medicine you are using.
An acupuncturist undergoes a rigorous 3-4 year graduate level program and maintains MA state licensure by completing at least 30 continuing education hours per renewal cycle (2 years) and national diplomate status by completing 60 continuing education hours per renewal cycle (4 years). Western biomedicine and modern day diseases are studied alongside traditional Chinese medicine in order to provide you the best care possible. You'll be in good hands!