Frequently Asked Questions

Artwork by Heather Gordon

Artwork by Heather Gordon

Does acupuncture hurt?

Acupuncture feels different for everyone. Most people don’t notice much when the needles are inserted. Sometimes people might feel a dull ache or heaviness where the needle is inserted, or occasionally mild itchiness. Most all sensation subsides quickly and people tend to get so relaxed they fall asleep after needles are inserted.

Do you reuse needles?

Absolutely not. Each needle comes sterilized and ready for one time use. Once it is used it is dissposed of in a Sharps container. Needles are never inserted twice.

How many treatments will I need?

The number of treatments a person needs is completely individual. I typically suggest 6 consecutive treatments, however some issues could take more or less time. Acupuncture has an accumulation effect. The more you do, the better the body responds and the longer the treatment holds.

It is also important to note that acupuncture is a great preventive medicine. Getting treated on a routine basis will help keep stress levels down, increase immunity, and improvea one’s overall well being. Personally, I get treated every other week to help maintain a balance. Some months I need more and sometimes I need less.

What do I wear?

Loose fitting clothing is best for acupuncture. Unless you are getting a back treatment or need needles in the thigh area, you will likely be able to keep on all your clothes. Loose fitting clothes will allow me to get to areas on the legs, arms and stomach without you having to change. If you do need to remove any clothing, I will step out of the room and provide you with a sheet or gown to cover yourself once you’re on the table.

Are there side effects to acupuncture?

There are common side effects to acupuncture, however they are rare. Occasionally patients will feel tired after a treatment. Typically this happens in the first treatment or two. It is also possible a patient will feel a bit worse right after a treatment, but improve greatly the next day. Bruising can also be a side effect. Harmless, but possible.

How long are treatments?

Your first treatment will be an hour and a half since I will have a lot of questions for you. Follow up treatments will be an hour. For follow ups we will typically chat for 15-20 minutes and then spend the rest of the time with needles in and finish with Tui Na (chinese massage), moxibustion, cupping, or gua sha.