How Does Acupuncture Work?
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine theory, acupuncture acts as a guide to influence the flow of the body’s energy. Qi (pronounced “chee”) flows along certain pathways, called meridians, and any disruption or blockage in Qi causes disease. Each meridian is associated with its own specific organ and psychological system. The insertion of the needles into acupoints unblocks disrupted Qi while honing excess or deficient amounts. It is akin to using strategic locations to gently shift the trajectory of running water in a river.
Clinical studies suggest that acupuncture affects the central nervous system, which causes the release of endorphins and serotonin altering the perception of pain in the body. Acupuncture has an anti-inflammatory effect on the body, boosts immunity, and helps regulate the endocrine and other bodily systems.
What Should I Do Before My Acupuncture Visit?
- Eat a light meal
- Wear loose clothing
- Avoid caffeine, stimulants, alcohol, and intense physical activity
- Avoid brushing your tongue for 36–48 hours before your appointment
- Make a list of all the medications and supplements that you take
- Download our Acupuncture Intake Form and fill it out
Is Acupuncture Painful?
No, the needles are incredibly thin and most people minimally register their insertion, if at all. The needles involved in acupuncture are unlike those used in Western medicine. They are about the circumference of a strand of human hair. Many people do feel a warm, swirling, energy surge, or a jolt sensation at the insertion site, which is indicative of the Qi. Some patients can feel a twitch or dull ache at the specific point, but most find themselves nodding off while waiting for needle removal.
What Can I Expect From Treatment?
Your first treatment will involve a complete health history and evaluation. You will fill out a dossier about your physical, mental, and emotional well-being, and answer questions pertaining to your lifestyle. Your practitioner will then discuss with you an effective treatment plan. During your treatment, you will lie down and have tiny needles inserted into specific acupoints that correlate with areas in need of improved/modified energy flow. You will then spend approximately 25 minutes relaxing before the needles are removed.
How Safe Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is incredibly safe. Each needle is in a sterile package and is used only once. Needle application is done by trained and licensed professionals and the treatment is WHO and NIH approved. Acupuncture has no serious side effects and is a natural and drug-free alternative to Western medical approaches.
How Many Treatments Will I Need?
The number and frequency of your visits will be dependent on the condition and severity of your underlying state. Some minor afflictions, like a cold or muscle soreness, can be alleviated within one or two treatments; more chronic issues will require more visits.
What Kind of Training Do Acupuncturists Receive?
All New Jersey Acupuncturists are required to have a bachelor’s degree as well as licensing. Acupuncture training consists of three to four years of extensive graduate training at a nationally accredited school and all acupuncturists must pass several board exams and display clinical proficiency in both Eastern and Western medicine.