What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is the ancient art of inserting needles into specific points along the body meridians to create beneficial effects on a person’s health. Our acupuncture system is classical. Here is how some of the ancestors of our tradition described it:

” Acupuncture points are the locations in which qi and blood are infused.” – Su Wen (Classic of the Medicine of Ancient China)

“Each point has a name of profound significance.” – Precious Supplementary Prescriptions (classical text)

“The means by which disease occurs and where people are healed are in the (twelve) meridians, the basis of all theory and treatment.” – Nei Jing (Classic of Difficult Medical Issues)

“The acupuncturist observes the relationship between yin and yang carefully, and makes adjustments to bring about equilibrium.” – Nei Jing (Classic of Difficult Medical Issues)

How does it work?

There are acupuncture points all over the body, located in harmony with the natural anatomical patterns. The points have specific actions on meridians, organs, organ systems, body parts, and energy. Alone, one point can have many effects. Combining several points creates a global effect known as the acupuncture treatment. When a point is needled, the Qi (chi) in the point is activated and sends a message to the to balance the flow.

Imbalances or disharmony occur when the body qi is stagnant, blocked, or deficient. Acupuncture restores the proper flow of qi to bring the body into harmony with its naturally healthy state.

Do I need a referral to see an acupuncturist?

No, you do not need a referral. You can simply call us to schedule your appointment. Acupuncture will not negatively interfere with conventional medicine or any other therapy. It is noninvasive and supports the overall healing process. Therefore, no referral is required.

Why do you have a No-Show Fee?

We did not want to have a No-Show Fee. However, we found that sessions book up quickly and No-shows were taking valuable time away from people who would like to be consistent with their acupuncture. When an appointment is booked, it is saying “yes” to 1-1.5 hours of the practitioner’s time to work on your health. If someone reserves this time and then no-shows, it took the session away from someone who needed it. The fee is $40. Please read Appointment Policy for more information.

Do you accept insurance?

We do not do any insurance billing and we are not in network with any insurance company. If it is your first visit with us, please do not ask us to work with your insurance or ask for an exception. We keep simple, flat fees that allow us to focus treatment time completely on our patients without administrative concerns taking away from that time. Having simple fees helps us to keep costs down, price of service reasonable, and to keep the focus where it belongs: On health and wellness.

Does Acupuncture hurt?

Acupuncture is neither painful nor invasive, however, some points tend to be more reactive to Qi and give a buzzing or tingling sensation. During needling there is a specific dull sensation that occurs when the needle connects with the qi called “Da Qi”. This is the proper and desirable sensation in acupuncture. We use relaxation techniques combined with high quality needles to offer a comfortable needling method.

What conditions does Acupuncture help with?

Most people have heard of acupuncture for anxiety, pain, fertility, and breaking addictive habits. However, acupuncture is a holistic system, so it is applicable to a wide variety of conditions. Acupuncture is also a form of prevention and “maintenance care” for the continuation of health at any age. In other words, it is not necessary to have a condition to receive acupuncture. It can be part of a regular health routine for prevention, maintenance, and relaxation.

Health research investigations from around the world consider acupuncture to be effective for: anxiety/stress, arthritis, inflammation, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic colds (low immunity), digestive upset, depression including seasonal depression, eye and vision problems, headaches, migraines, menopause and menstruation issues, PTSD and other stress syndromes, Emotional upset, Smoking and addictions, TMJ Syndrome, ED, Urinary disorders, and more.

We recommend consulting the following articles for more information about the effectiveness of acupuncture:

University of San Diego Center for Integrative Medicine: About Acupuncture

Healthline – How Acupuncture Works

Shape: Acupuncture Treatment Benefits

What research has been done on Acupuncture?

Acupuncture research is ongoing, and has many decades of history and evidence to support it. Most research was lead by the World Health Organization, university systems and government research panels. For more information about the research of acupuncture, we recommend consulting the following:

National Center for Biotechnology Information

World Health Organization

Pub Med

The Society for Acupuncture Research

What should I expect in a visit to the acupuncturist?

You will arrive in a quiet, relaxing clinical setting. Your acupuncturist will show you to a comfortable treatment room, which will be your room for the session. If it is your first visit, you will do the “long interview” with your acupuncturist to discuss your chief concerns and health history. If it is not your first visit, you will do the “short interview” and address your concerns of the day or work on your health goals. It is customary for the acupuncturist to take your pulses in six locations on the wrist. After the interview, the treatment is done with you resting comfortably on the table with the needles retained for 20 – 25 minutes. Most people simply rest and relax during this time, or take a nap. After this, the needles are removed and the acupuncturist will take the pulses again, looking for changes in the body’s qi. You should feel refreshed and relaxed after the session.

How will I know that it’s working?

Every person responds differently to acupuncture, but most are able to tell within the first few visits if a positive influence is being made. If symptoms begin to lessen, you have more energy and clarity of mind, and sleep and digestion improve, these are good signs that acupuncture is effective for you and is working.

Do you treat more than one condition at a time?

Quite simply, yes we do. The concept of the Root and Branches in Oriental Medicine helps with discovering the causes of health problems. While different conditions occurring simultaneously may not seem connected on the surface, at a deeper level, it is possible that they are. Our objective is to bring the body back into balance on the deeper (Root) level, which helps to reduce or eliminate symptoms on the surface (Branches) level.

How many treatments will I need?

Most people can expect results within 3-6 sessions. Depending on how long you have been dealing with the problem, it could take more sessions. (Chronic conditions sometimes require more sessions.) However, people frequently report small improvements right away and feel better within 1-2 days after the session. Most people always derive some benefit from their acupuncture experience, especially when paired with positive lifestyle changes.

What if I am afraid of needles?

Needle phobia or needle anxiety is a very common concern. The good news is, we have specific acupuncture points for the beginning of the session to reduce anxiety. There are also many relaxation techniques and products (such as Bach Rescue Remedy) to calm the nerves. We worked hard in our formal training to develop pain-free needling techniques. Our clinic is a calming, judgment-free zone and we will take the time needed to find the right technique that works for you.

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