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An appointment with an acupuncture practitioner frequently includes a blend of traditional Chinese practices and modern medicine. Practitioners come from a variety of backgrounds, which influence their approach to treatment. An acupuncture practitioner who emphasizes the treatment’s roots in Asian medicine is likely to take a holistic approach, viewing the pain as a sign that the body as a whole is out of balance. The practitioner may discuss the life force of the body, or qi (pronounced “chee”), and explain that the optimal flow of qi is the key to good health.

An office visit for acupuncture may vary in other ways from a standard office visit. After discussing medical history and questions about sleep and other daily habits, the practitioner may examine the tongue, observing its shape, color, and coating. Pulse strength and quality may also be checked, and there may be additional examinations, depending on the nature of the symptoms.
An acupuncture appointment may take significantly longer than a standard medical appointment, and other types of stimulation, such as massage or heat therapy, may also be provided. Hour-long appointments are common.

If treatment will be on the hands or feet, wearing loose clothing to allow access to these areas is advised. Otherwise, a hospital gown may be provided for modesty before treatment starts. Once the person lies down on a padded table, 1 to 20 metallic needles are inserted into the body. The needles may barely break the skin or be inserted several inches into the body. Deeper needles are typically used to treat painful areas surrounded by deep muscle or fat, as with sciatica. Insertion of the ultra-thin needles may cause a tingling sensation. Acupuncture typically causes little or no pain. The depth of the needles and the duration of the treatment vary with the medical problem and the individual’s comfort level. Needles may be used for a few minutes or up to about 50 minutes.Acupuncture needles come in different sizes and shapes and can be moved or turned once they are placed. Mild electrical pulses are sometimes used between two needles (called electro-acupuncture) to expand the area of pain relief.



Common conditions that are helped through acupuncture include but are not limited to:

  • Allergy
  • Arthritis
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Neck pain
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Digestive trouble
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Headaches
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Low back pain
  • Mentrual irregularities
  • Migrane
  • Nausea
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Pain
  • PMS
  • Reproductive problems
  • Sciatica
  • Shoulder pain
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Stress
  • Tennis elbow
  • Wrist pain