There are over 360 regular acupuncture points on the body’s 12 main meridian channels. Each point has an energetic function. Once diagnosis is complete, points are selected based on clinical function or to support the rebalancing of the body. Selected points are stimulated with a thin needle during the acupuncture treatment.
Most people find that acupuncture does not hurt. The needles are very thin, so any “fear” of needles you have experienced before should not keep you from investigating whether or not acupuncture is right for you. Once each needle is inserted, the patient may experience a “Qi-sensation.” This is usually a radiating sensation which means that the Qi or energy of that point has been accessed. This means your treatment is working!
All needles are sterile and are used only once. They are disposed of in a box specifically designed for biomedical waste and ultimately destroyed.
Yes, acupuncture can be done in conjunction with western modern medical treatments because it is a natural way of strengthening your body and improving your symptoms without side effects. This means that it will not counteract or interfere with medications. Herbal therapy is optional, and formulas will be carefully selected to ensure that there are no contraindications between medications and the herbs.
Many of the most frequently used acupuncture points are on the abdomen, below the elbows, and on the leg just two inches above the knee and below. It is very helpful if you wear or bring clothing that makes accessing these areas of your body easier, or bring shorts. Please plan on removing any hosiery. Gowns and sheets are utilized for draping, if needed.
Your first visit takes the longest, as we need plenty of time for the initial evaluation. Please plan on one hour and fifteen minutes for your first appointment. Follow-up visits are often an hour or less. If you are getting treated for pain, especially back pain, all of your visits may take an hour and fifteen minutes to an hour and a half. This is both because of the treatment time needed and the additional accessory techniques that may be utilized.
After you are evaluated by the acupuncturist, she will give you a recommended treatment plan. The length of a treatment plan is often related to how long you have been experiencing the symptoms. Symptoms that are two weeks old will usually resolve faster than symptoms that are two years old. Each individual has different results though. Your own body constitution will affect how quickly your issues are resolved, and that is often better determined once treatment has begun.
It is very common for patients to be treated one to two times a week until their symptoms resolve, and then have less frequent treatments to maintain their progress.
Every health plan is different. Please contact your health plan to determine if they cover acupuncture and what their billing and reimbursement requirements are. Return to Balance does not bill insurance directly, but is happy to provide a receipt, so that the patient can seek reimbursement.