How does Acupuncture Work?
Acupuncture is a technique that uses fine needles to stimulate specific points along energetic pathways that flow within the body or “meridians” to balance vital energy or Qi “Chee” for optimum health, improving blood flow, relaxing muscles, relieving pain and treating a variety of chronic, acute and degenerative conditions.
In a western concept, acupuncture points are believed to stimulate the central nervous system, releasing chemicals into the muscles, spinal cord and brain, that can then reduce pain. These biochemical changes can stimulate the body’s natural healing abilities and promote physical and emotional well being.
What happens during a treatment?
The first consultation can typically last from 1 to 1.5 hours (follow-up treatments typically 45 minutes to 1 hour).
During this time the practitioner asks and gathers all relevant information pertaining to your main reason for coming and also a series of questions pertaining to your overall mind and body functions, in order to build a clear picture of who you are and how you and your body function together.
We look at demeanor, posture and range of motion.
The tongue is looked at, which reveals the basic qualities of a disharmony.
Pulses at the wrists are taken. Disharmonies in the body and mind can leave a clear imprint on the pulse, which is felt with varying degrees of pressure.
After this information is gathered and synthesized a treatment plan is discussed, detailing a number of treatments and what you should expect from treatment.
Is it safe?
When performed by a competent and trained licensed acupuncturist it is extremely safe. Today all licensed acupuncturists use individually packaged, sterile, single use, disposable needles.
Look to see if your acupuncturist is a member of the NZRA (New Zealand Register of Acupuncturists).
Does it hurt?
The needles used are very fine (sometimes not much thicker than a hair), so is virtually painless. Nothing like receiving an injection. Sometimes the patient may experience a slight tingling, dullness, warmth or heaviness in or around the area.
Many patients find acupuncture extremely relaxing and often fall asleep during treatment.
Is there anything I need to do or bring to an acupuncture treatment?
- Bring any relevant medical information (including ACC 45 number) and a list of medications you are on.
- It is better if you are not excessively fatigued, full or hungry.
- Avoid coffee before coming.
- Preferably wear loose fitting clothing.
What do I do during treatment?
It is important for you to understand that you are in full control of your treatment. If there is anything you don’t wish to discuss or if you are feeling uncomfortable with certain procedures, tell your practitioner and your concerns will be treated with understanding and respect.
Above all, relax and enjoy this ancient art of healing.