First Acupuncture Visit
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
Initial visits generally last from 30 to 90 minutes. Your acupuncturist will take a detailed health history, perform a physical exam, and provide you with your unique treatment plan.
During your first exam, your acupuncturist will spend time getting to know you and your health concerns. You may be asked a wide range of questions about your symptoms, eating, exercise, sleep habits, emotional states and anything that may offer insight into your health.
Your practitioner will also employ diagnostic tools that are unique to acupuncture and TCM such as tongue and pulse diagnosis.
Your Treatment Plan
Once your acupuncturist has gathered enough information, you’ll receive a comprehensive diagnosis and a treatment plan that will explain:
- Your underlying imbalances
- Your timeline of care
- The types of treatment you will receive
Getting the Most Out of Treatment
For the best treatment results, keep a few things in mind:
- Show up on time
- Don’t eat a large meal before your visit
- Wear loose, comfortable clothes during appointments
- Be sure to discuss any questions or concerns with your acupuncturist
- Refrain from overexertion, drugs, and alcohol for at least six hours after treatment
- Follow your treatment plan between visits
- Keep all of your appointments, as each visit builds upon the previous one
How Treatment Works
To treat any Qi (energy) imbalances, fine, sterile needles are inserted at specific acupuncture points along the meridian pathways. Other therapies such as cupping, Gwa Sha or moxabustion may be included in your treatment plan. In addition, herbal remedies are another important aspect of acupuncture. Make sure you understand and follow your practitioner’s directions in order to get the most benefit from these treatments.
What should I expect for my first treatment?
After the first treatment has been administered, depending on the ailment being treated, many experiences may occur. Immediate, total or partial relief from pain or other symptoms may be experienced. Some patients experience a sudden burst of energy while others may feel relaxed. Many people experience a calming satisfaction. Small, localized bruises from minor bleeding under the skin are infrequent, but do occur and are no cause for alarm, they actually provide a kind of bonus treatment. The reabsorption of the blood continues the stimulation of the acupuncture point even without the needle in place.
Will it hurt?
The process of applying the thin acupuncture needles is painless and does not cause discomfort. These needles are left in place for 20 to 40 minutes and upon impact result in feelings of pleasantness and comfort.
Are the needles safe?
Yes. License acupuncturists are required to be certified in Clean Needle Technique and only use sterilized, individually packaged needles. These needles are disposed immediately following your treatment.
Follow up Visits
Usually last from 45 to 60 minutes. Your acupuncturist will ask you about any changes you have felt since last treatment and be sure to voice any new concerns. After the assessment, your acupuncturist will proceed with your appropriate treatment.
Your Role In The Healing Process
Achieving harmony and balance is the result of focusing on your health, and committing to a healthy lifestyle.
Even after your symptoms are resolved, acupuncture can assist you in maintaining your health, and possibly prevent future imbalances. The more you incorporate acupuncture and TCM into your life, the more you’ll learn to nurture your body, mind and spirit.
Acupuncture is not an instant fix
True healing takes time and dedication. Depending on your current health and symptoms, recovery time varies to see the results you want.. With a little patience and an open mind, you’ll be on your way to health and vitality.
Acupuncture and TCM offer a safe and effective holistic health care system. This natural approach can both resolve symptoms and enhance your overall health.
By taking the right steps and planting the seeds of health, you are on the road to a healthier you!