Frequently Asked Questions

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an effective form of medical treatment involving the painless insertion of thin, sterile needles into points of lower electrical resistance on the body. It has been in used continuously for over 3000 years by billions of people and is part of a coherent, comprehensive system of healing known as Oriental or Asian Medicine. Acupuncture is a safe, effective, drug-free method of treatment.

Does Acupuncture Hurt?

NO! Since the needles are ultra thin there is no comparison to the hypodermic injection needle sensation. Normal sensations associated with Acupuncture or dry needling are often less than of a mosquito bite upon insertion. When the point is stimulated by a skillful Acupuncturist there may be some sensations along the Acupuncture pathway such as tingling, dull, warm or slightly achy feelings.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

The number of treatments you will need to receive the full benefit of Acupuncture therapy will be determined after the initial visit and assessment. The most effacious treatment program will be recommended and discussed with you at that time. Most studies for chronic illnesses are set up with bi –weekly treatments for 6-12 weeks to achieve optimum results. However, many clients report feeling benefits even after their first session. There are three stages of treatment: Relief or Acute Care, Intermediate Care and Maintenance or Wellness Care.

How Does Acupuncture Work?

According to National Institute of Health (NIH) Consensus on Acupuncture(1997) reports “studies have demonstrated that acupuncture can cause multiple biological responses, mediated mainly by sensory neurons, to many structures within the central nervous system. This can lead to activation of pathways affecting various physiological systems in the brain, as well as the periphery.” NIH further states that acupuncture “may activate the hypothalmus and the pituitary gland, resulting in a broad spectrum of systemic effects. Alteration in the secretion of neurotransmitters and neurohormones, and changes in the regulation of blood flow, both centrally and peripherally, have been documented. There is evidence of alterations in immune functions produced by acupuncture.”

Acupuncture Can:

  • Promote the release of endorphorins for pain relief and mood enhancement.
  • Increase circulation and reduce inflammation.
  • Stimulate and strengthen immune responses.
  • Affect levels of glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides and hormones in the blood.
  • Balance the nervous system, endocrine and gastrointestinal function.

How Does Oriental Medicine Diagnosis Work?

Oriental Medicine determines what it calls “Patterns of Disharmony” by using what are know as the Four Examinations which are:

  1. Looking: Through carefully observing you we can gain much valuable information, the color of your skin and face, the condition of hair and nails, whether movements are quick or slow, the sparkle in your eyes (“the windows of the soul”) are all indicators of your health pattern. Oriental Medicine recognizes the importance of tongue diagnosis in health evaluation, the color of the the tongue, its’ coating, shape, markings and movement all have clinical significance.
  2. Asking: By discussing your health history and concerns we can develop an accurate picture of your present state of health and the factors contributing to your overall wellness level. By understanding relationships between various systems such as the circulatory, nervous, uro-genital, digestive and respiratory much can be learned.
  3. Hearing and Smelling: Traditional Oriental Medicine recognizes the importance of various sounds and smells in determining patterns of imbalance. For example a patient with shouting voice and a sour smell may have a liver-gall bladder (wood element) imbalance.
  4. Palpation: Did you know that your pulse is more significant than just its’ rate? We consider not only the rate of the pulse but the qualities of it. Is it wiry, choppy, slippery or thready? Those are just a few of the 22 qualities of the pulse. We may also palpate the abdomen for tenseness or sensitivity, as well as the acupuncture pathways for signs of cold or heat. After evaluating all the information gathered during the Health Assessment we can determine your Pattern(s) of Disharmony and design an individualized treatment plan to bring you and your systems back into balance and harmony.

What About Chinese Herbal Medicine?

In some cases Chinese Herbs may be recommended to help your body heal. Chinese herbs have been in use since 210 B.C. and have been utilized to re-balance the body and mind. Generally the herbs are combined in formulations which have been researched over thousands of years and in many cases by modern research as well. These formulas can be administered by decoction, elixirs, granules, capsules or tablets depending on individual needs. Herbal formulas can have a wide range of applications from resolving a urinary tract infection with a “Damp Heat Clearing” formula to strengthening the immune and digestive systems with “Tonic herbs” such as Ginseng and Astragalus. Contraindications with pharmaceutical drugs is also an important consideration before administering medicinal herbs.

What About Oriental Nutrition?

“The source and preservation of health comes from the five flavors of food in the diet. When the body is imbalanced, the physician should use dietetics to harmonize and fortify.” The Yellow Emperor’s Classic on Internal Medicine. Hippocrates, the father of Western Medicine, said “Let food be your medicine…” By helping you to establish an individualized diet balanced from the perspective of Oriental Nutrition we can enhance your ability to attain optimum health and wellness. While Western Nutrition considers factors like calories, protein, carbohydrates, fats, nutrients, Oriental Medicine takes into consideration the energetic qualities of foods,five tastes, colors, temperatures, yin or yang (alkaline/acid) properties.

Is Acupuncture Covered By Insurance?

More and more insurance companies are including coverage for Acupuncture, check your insurer about reimbursement for Acupuncture services. While we do not bill insurance companies directly, we will be happy to provide you with a super bill to submit to your company.

Does Medicare Cover Acupuncture?

While a bill has been introduced that would cover Medicare recipients under Supplemental Part B to Congress, at this time it is not covered.

Can I Use Acupuncture With Conventional Medicine?

Yes. Many doctors, nurses and other conventional care providers recognize and recommend Acupuncture. Hospitals such as John Hopkins, Sloan Kettering, MD Anderson,UCLA Medical Center, to mention just a few are offering Acupuncture services to their patients.

What Services Do You Offer?

Acupuncture, Electro-Acupuncture, Auricular (Ear) Acupuncture, Acutonics * Sound Healing, Cupping & Gua Sha, Moxibustion, Acupuncture Facial Rejuvenation, Chinese Herbal Medicine, Oriental Nutrition and Chi Gong classes.