What can I expect during an acupuncture treatment?

After an initial assessment of your health, lifestyle, and behaviors, you may have acupuncture or be scheduled to come back a day or two later. Depending on your problem you may be recommended to have several treatments over a period of several weeks. Typically, the longer a particular problem has been present the greater number of treatments will be required for improvement or resolution.

On the day of your treatment, several preparations should be made:

  • Try and get a good night’s sleep the night before your treatment.
  • Eat a light meal with minimal spices the night before your treatment.
  • Drink plenty of water, one or two glasses in the morning.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol or other stimulants or depressants.
  • Abstain from sexual activity.
  • Try and avoid mental/emotional stressors.
  • Have a quiet period to calm yourself thirty (30) -minutes before your treatment.
  • Do not take any pain medication.
  • Dress in comfortable clothes (if acupuncture will be performed on your back or torso you will be asked to put on a gown).
  • NOTE: It may be advisable to arrange for transportation as many people feel extremely calm after treatment.

Upon arrival, you will be placed in a treatment room. You will meet with Dr. Hatcher who will discuss the treatment plan with you. A combination of body points and ear points may be used for treatment. A thin, sterile, metallic, solid needle will be used to access the particular points. These are single-use needles. These needles are hair-thin and most people experience little or no discomfort as the needles are inserted.  Points may be accessed on the arms, legs, back and/or torso. After the needles have been placed, you will remain lying on a treatment table for about thirty minutes.

During this time you will be encouraged to focus on your breathing to calm your mind and facilitate the balancing of your body’s energies. Relaxing music of your choice may be played. Aroma therapies may be utilized as well. If electric stimulation of acupuncture points is utilized you will be instructed on how to control the strength of the stimulation. A heating lamp will often be used to stimulate acupuncture points, also.

After your treatment, you will feel very relaxed. Have someone drive you home to preferably continue the balancing of your energies in a calm environment. It is common to feel some pressure or tingling at acupuncture points after treatments so do not be alarmed by this. Sometimes a small collection of blood will accumulate at the sites and should resolve in a day or two.

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