What is an acupuncture treatment like?

Your initial acupuncture visit tends to be a longer session, this allows for time to get a comprehensive health history.  Depending on the complexity of your health concerns and medical history the intake time will be longer. Additionally your tongue and pulse will be analyzed, as these are part of Chinese diagnostic techniques. This information allows me to begin to understand the root of your health concerns, not simply address your symptoms. To allow for more time with actual needles it is recommended that you print out and complete the intake form in advance.
After intake consultation and treatment plan is agreed upon, we will begin your acupuncture treatment with some manual therapy and needle selection. Most points used in treatments are located distal to the elbows and knees.  However there are points all over the body and at times point selection could include abdomen, back, chest and/or scalp regions.  To assure you are comfortable and for point access, it is recommended that you wear loose fitted clothing or bring a change of comfy clothes with you.
Once the needles are in place you will rest for approximately 20-30minutes allowing the acupuncture to do its work. The needles are then removed and you are given time to slowly come back to the rest of the world.
Follow-up visits usually last 45minutes to 1 hour and the frequency depends on severity of the condition, intensity of pain, how long the problem has been occurring and how your body is responding to the treatments. Chronic severe conditions generally take longer to correct than acute conditions.
Acupuncture works by supporting the body’s natural ability to heal itself and restore balance. If I do not feel that my services are able to assist you with your condition, I will do my best to guide you in the direction to receive the best care for your specific needs.
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What does acupuncture feel like?
Different people report different sensations with acupuncture, though the most common are tingling, a warm sensation, buzzing, a dull feeling or slight pulsations. Some experience acupuncture as sensations of ‘energy’ running throughout the body, into areas being treated or an overall sensation of relaxation and calmness.                                                                                                                                            
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Does acupuncture hurt?
 
People often confuse, acupuncture needles with hypodermic needles used in hospitals, this is incorrect. Acupuncture needles vary in sizes and often are thinner than a human hair, and insertion of the needles is generally painless. The focus is to make your treatment painless and relaxing, so if you feel any pain or discomfort, just mention it and the needles can easily be adjusted or treatment modified. 

Do you reuse needles?

NO!!!!! Only single-use disposable sterilized needles are used. Each needle is placed in a biohazard sharps container following use. 

How many treatments will I need?

The goal is to help you feel better as soon as possible by restoring balance to the body and giving you the tools to maintain that balance. Many imbalances respond very quickly.  For more chronic conditions 4-6 or more visits may be necessary. Even with chronic, long-standing health problems, patients generally feel immediate relief after their first treatment, but may need several more visits for lasting change. With a proactive involvement the effects of treatments can last longer and follow-up visits can be scheduled simply for preventive care.

How often do I have to come? 
 
Acupuncture is most effective if sessions are done 1-2 times per week initially. This creates momentum and lasting results.  As the condition improves, the treatments are done less frequently.  
 
What should I wear?
 
While receiving a treatment it is important that you are comfortable. Loose fitting clothing is most suitable, that way you can relax and allow the body to focus on the treatment. If you are scheduling a blend of acupuncture and massage, you will undress in the same manner that you would for a traditional massage appointment.

How am I going to feel after my treatment, will I be able to return to work?
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After your acupuncture treatment you might feel sleepy, hungry and relaxed, so it is wise to plan a little extra time if you need to go back to work. The effects of the treatment vary for each person, though treatments tend to be mild and should not prevent you from doing other things with your day. 
*If you have been doing cleanses or a lot of personal clearing work and/or processing, I find that the treatments can be very intense and it may take longer for you to ground. If this is the case for you, please let me know in advance so I can modifiy the treatment to best suit you.