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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How does acupuncture work?

A. Traditional Acupuncture is the insertion of very fine needles to promote the flow of natural energy (Qi) and blood, through distinct meridians or pathways within the body, somewhat like the nerves and blood vessels do.  Specific points on the body have been mapped by the Chinese over a period of two thousand years.  According to ancient theory, acupuncture allows Qi (pronounced chee) to flow to areas where it is deficient and away from where it is in excess.  The Chinese have a saying, “There is no pain if there is free flow; if there is pain, there is no free flow.”  The goal is to keep the Qi and blood flowing smoothly to achieve health and keeping the body in balance.


Q. Does acupuncture hurt?

A. In the majority of cases, patients may feel some cramping, heaviness, distention, tingling or electrical sensation either around the needle or traveling up or down the affected meridian, or energy pathway.  But these sensations should only be felt upon insertion of the needle. Some patients feel nothing. Treatments should be a relaxing experience.  Most patients fall asleep.


Q. What problems can be treated by acupuncture?

A. Acupuncture has been used for centuries in China to treat many problems.  The following list contains some of the more common.

Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders

  • Toothaches
  • Earaches
  • Sinus inflammation or dryness

Respiratory Disorders

  • Asthma
  • Colds
  • Coughs

Gastrointestinal Disorders

  • Digestive Tract Problems
  • Ulcers
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Diarrhea and constipation
  • Dysentery caused by certain bacteria

Gynecological Disorders

  • PMS
  • Menstrual Cramps
  • Irregular menstrual cycle
  • Infertility
  • Endometriosis
  • Menopause, etc.

Nervous System and Muscular Disorders

  • Headaches
  • Certain facial paralysis
  • Acute/chronic pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Sciatica
  • Tennis Elbow
  • Frozen Shoulder
  • Arthritis

Q. How does Traditional Chinese Medicine diagnose a patient?

A. The practitioner uses many methods to make a diagnosis:

  • Examining the tongue tells us the condition of your organ/meridian systems, the Qi and blood and whether there are any excesses or deficiencies.  It is best not to brush your tongue, eat or drink anything one hour before your appointment.
  • Pulses are taken.  There are three pulses on the wrists that the practitioner will take.  This confirms and presents us with even more information about what is going on inside the body.
  • An extensive intake of the patient will be done.  This practice of filling out forms and answering questions helps the practitioner gather as much information as needed to make an accurate diagnosis.


Q. Will I feel immediate results?

A. Patients often experience the most dramatic results in the first treatment.  Some experience an immediate and total or partial relief in their pain or other symptoms.  This relief may last or some pain may return depending on if a problem is chronic or acute.  In a few cases, there may be no immediate relief only to notice the pain diminish over the next couple of days.  Generally, you should expect to feel better.