Frequently Asked Questions:
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture originated and has been documented in China for over 2000 years. It part of the practice of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM.) It is based on the theory of yin and yang, and human’s relationship to nature. The relationships of organ systems within the human must be in balance for wellness. Disharmonies may manifest externally when the internal organs are blocked, vice versa, external factors may cause harm to the body and affect the organs.
Acupuncture is the insertion of ultra-fine, sterile, single-use needles to access the body system to create harmony and eliminate symptoms. Other non-insertive modalities may be used, such as herbal therapy, acupressure, cupping, gwa sha, tuina, and moxibustion to promote wellness.
How does it work?
Qi, pronounced “chee” is the vital force that flows within the body. It follows specific maps, called meridians, that correspond to yin and yang organs. The practitioner literally taps into the body system to remove blockages and promote the smooth movement of Qi to encourage balance and alleviate symptoms.
The acupuncturist will perform a complete medical intake, including inspection of the tongue and six positions of the pulse to come up with a diagnosis based on the patterns of organ disharmony. Then he or she will choose appropriate acupuncture points to activate the Qi.
Who performs acupuncture?
Only licensed acupuncturists may perform acupuncture in Massachusetts. Check your local state laws. Requirements include a Masters degree from an accredited college in Acupuncture or Oriental Medicine (M.Ac. or M.A.O.M) and national board certification by the NCCAOM, and a current state license.
What to expect?
Please wear loose, comfortable clothing to your appointment and be sure to have eaten something within a couple of hours before your treatment. Avoid alcohol and caffeine. Please bring a list of medications and supplements that you are taking. Many people will get a sensation of heaviness, deep feeling of relaxation or even fall asleep. Insertion is virtually painless. Any lingering discomfort should be reported to the practitioner. Needles are retained for 20-40 minutes while you relax on a heated bed.
How often should I be treated?
Results will vary with each person’s response to treatment and chronicity of the issue. Recommended treatment would be to come twice a week for two weeks, or at least once a week for four weeks to consider your response to acupuncture. The goal is to develop a wellness plan with your practitioner.