Frequently Asked Questions
What is Qi?
Qi (Pronounced “chee”), or Life Energy, flows throughout the body. Qi helps to energize the body and protect it from illness, pain, and disease. A person’s health is influenced by the quality, quantity, and balance of Qi. Qi circulates through specific pathways called meridians. There are 14 main meridian pathways throughout the body. Each is connected to specific organs and glands.
What will my acupuncturist do?
During the initial exam a full health history will be taken. Questions will be asked regarding symptoms, health, and lifestyle. We will also check pulses and your tongue and may conduct a physical exam. This information is then organized to create a complete, accurate and comprehensive diagnosis of where Qi has become blocked or imbalanced. After the interview process, you may receive an acupuncture treatment. Visits may last from 30 to 90 minutes.
Do I have to believe in acupuncture for it to work?
No. Acupuncture results are not dependant on what you believe.Treatments are cumulative and approximately 80% of people whom are treated will notice some improvement.
Why do they want to feel my pulse?
There are 6 pulse positions on each wrist that we will palpate. Each position corresponds to a specific meridian and organ.
Why do they want to look at my tongue?
The tongue is a map of the body. It reflects the general health of the organs and meridians. We will look at the color, shape, cracks, and coating on your tongue.
How many treatments will I need?
The number of treatments will vary from person to person. Some people experience immediate relief; others may take months or even years to achieve results.
How should I prepare?
- Come with any questions you have-we’re here to help you.
- Wear loose, comfortable clothing for easy access to acupuncture points.
- Don’t eat large meals just before your visit.
- Refrain from overexertion, working out, drugs or alcohol for up to six hours after the visit.
- Avoid stressful situations. Make time to relax and be sure to get plenty of rest.
- Between visits, take notes of any changes that may have occurred, such as the alleviation of pain, pain moving to other areas, or changes in the frequency and type of problems.
Do the needles hurt?
The sensation caused by an acupuncture needle varies, most people feel no pain at all. The needles are tiny, just a little larger than a human hair.
How deep do they go?
The depth of the needle varies. For example, your acupuncturist will use a needling technique that is different in fleshier areas such as your buttocks. Typically, needles are inserted at depths ranging from 1/8 inch to 2½ inches deep.
How safe is acupuncture?
It is an all natural, drug–free therapy, yielding no side effects except feelings of relaxation and well-being. There is little danger of infection from acupuncture needles because they are sterile, used once and then discarded.
What is cupping?
Cupping is a therapy designed to stimulate the flow of blood and Qi within the superficial muscle layers. It is used for sore muscles, tension, neck pain and the common cold. In this therapy, a small glass or plastic “cup” is placed over specific areas on your body. A vacuum is created under the cup using heat or suction. They may be moved over an affected area or left in place. The redness and/or bruising will dissipate.
What is Tui Na?
Tui Na translates as “push grasp.” It is a massage technique that moves Qi in various parts of the body. It is used to relieve muscle pain, tension and inflammation and to heal injuries.
What is Moxibustion?
Moxibustion is a treatment that uses and herb called mugwort. It may be burned on the handle of the needle, above the skin, on salt or a slice of ginger. This is used to “warm” acupuncture points or areas in order to quicken the healing process.
Will my insurance cover acupuncture?
Insurance Coverage varies between providers. Contact your insurance provider to learn what kind of coverage your plan offers. Here are a few questions to ask:
- Will my plan cover acupuncture?
- How many visits per calendar year?
- Do I need a referral?
- Do I have a co-pay?
- Do I have a deductible? If yes, has it been met?
What can acupuncture treat?
Acupuncture is recognized by the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to be effective in the treatment of a wide variety of medical problems. Here is a list of a few health concerns that acupuncture has been effective in treating:
- Addiction – alcohol, drug, smoking
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Chronic fatigue
- Common cold
- Dental pain
- Digestive trouble
- Emotional problems
- Eye problems
- Facial palsy/tics
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome