Frequently Asked Questions

» What Is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a method of encouraging the body to promote natural healing and to improve normal body functioning. The techniques of acupuncture involve treatment through inserting fine needles at precisely identified points of the body.

» Is Acupuncture Safe?

Yes. Acupuncture use sterile disposable needles.

» Will my health insurance cover the cost?

We accept most insurance, but please check your insurance policy for details regarding accupuncture coverage.

» Does The Treatment Hurt?

Acupuncture needle are solid and extremely fine. They are not as invasive or as painful to receive as many assume. They do not cut the skin. Patients often comment about the comfort of treatment.

» How Many Visits Are Necessary?

The normal course of treatment may involve 3-8 visits depending on the severity of your problem and your responsiveness to acupuncture. For more difficult cases, 10 or more visits may be necessary. Post treatment maintenance may require biweekly or monthly visits.

» What should I do to prepare for a treatment? What should I do afterward?

You should not go to a treatment on an empty stomach. Eat a good (but not heavy) meal beforehand, making sure you have solid foods. Also, be sure to avoid drinking alcohol or highly caffeinated drinks such as coffee, tea, and soda before your treatment. After a treatment, it is best to have a relaxing evening and stay away from anything that would cause extreme shifts in body temperature (hot bath, sauna, cold dives, etc).


About

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) are emerging trends in American health care. 3,500 years old, these new sensations are complementing traditional Western medical care with increasing frequency and gaining acceptance within the American medical community. Acupuncture often excels in areas where conventional Western medicine falls short. Chronic disease, pain control and stress-related disorders are three of acupuncture and TCM's most effective and successful treatment areas. The effectiveness and success of TCM and acupuncture treatments have caused them to become more accepted in mainstream America.

TCM is rooted in ancient philosophy, logic, sensibility and the habits of a civilization unlike American ways. It considers important certain aspects of the human body often considered insignificant in Western medicine. It uses fanciful terminology like dampness, heat and wind in diagnostics. The TCM practitioner directs attention to the complete physiological and psychological individual. All relevant information is gathered and woven into a pattern of disharmony. This pattern then describes what is called a situation of imbalances. This diagnostic technique does not reveal a specific disease entity, but renders instead a workable description of the whole person. The question is not "What X is causing Y?" but rather, "What is the relationship between X and Y?"

TCM organizes symptoms and signs into configurations providing a framework for treatment. No part can be understood alone; only in its relation to the whole. In TCM, the vital energy of mind, body and spirit flow through 12 main pathways, each associated with an organ. This vital energy is called Qi (pronounced chee). Illness arises when any of the 12 channels become blocked, or when Qi is deficient in any meridian. It is necessary to restore the flow of Qi in order to treat the illness.

Acupuncture is one method used to reestablish Qi. Hair-fine, stainless steel needles are inserted into points along the channels to stimulate sluggish Qi or sedate overactive Qi. Because acupuncture needles are neither hollow nor razor sharp, like hypodermic needles used to inject medicine, they are not as invasive or painful as many assume. They push tissue aside to enter the body. They do not cut the skin. There is usually no bleeding associated with acupuncture treatment. Some slight pressure can be felt during insertion, but the needle is so thin it is rarely painful, especially with a skilled acupuncturist's precise application. The needles, once in place, can scarcely be felt beyond a slight tingling sensation. Sterile needles are used only once and disposed of immediately.

Many studies have documented that needling acupuncture points stimulates the nervous system to release chemicals in the muscles, spinal cord and brain to relieve pain. Therefore, the body produces its own natural pain relievers; further eliminating any sensation of pain during treatment.

TCM also uses herbal medicines. Prescriptions are usually available at the practitioner's office. Their function is either to nourish deficient conditions or clear blockages or pathogens. Most herbs are of plant origins. Some substances are obtained from animal sources; these can be avoided if a patient prefers to take only plant-based products.

Acupuncture office visits last from 30 to 60 minutes with the needles staying in for an average of 20 minutes. The normal course of treatment may involve 3-8 visits, depending on the problem's severity and your responsiveness to treatment. For more difficult cases, ten or more visits may be necessary. Continuing maintenance may require biweekly or monthly treatments.

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