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Acupuncture needles are extremely thin – no thicker than two human hairs. The needles have no resemblance to a hypodermic syringe. The needles are sterile, individually packaged, and disposed of after each use. Most needles are inserted just beneath the skin. Sensations vary from person to person, ranging from nothing at all to a brief ache or heaviness in the area being needled. Some points are more sensitive than others. By and large, patients describe the sensations as fleeting and the treatment experience as deeply relaxing.
This highly effective system of medical care is based on natural laws which govern the movement of vital life-giving energy, both in nature and in the body. This energy, called “Qi”, moves through the body in precise channels supporting functions of the body, mind and spirit. When the qi (pronounced chi) is moving dis-harmoniously, imbalance begins to surface in the form of specific symptoms. To address the underlying cause of a condition, these symptoms are viewed in relationship to the totality of a person. The gentle insertion of hair-thin needles at specific points along the channels help restore harmony. In the presence of this subtle, yet profound, intervention, symptoms often resolve, and patients frequently experience renewed vitality.
Patients who receive treatment report getting sick less often, improvement of vitality and stamina, and reductions in long term health care costs. A recent survey of people who receive acupuncture, conducted by Claire Cassidy, Ph.D., indicates that they see their physicians less frequently and use fewer medications. Over two thirds of those surveyed reported having avoided recommended surgery. In addition, patients have reported an overall enhancement in their well-being and an improved state of mind.
Many patients begin acupuncture treatment to find relief from a wide range of physical conditions. Many who are not experiencing ailments also seek treatment to maximize their wellness and maintain balance. The greatest reason to begin acupuncture treatment is to cultivate vitality and health and to stimulate the tremendous healing power of the body, mind and spirit.
The frequency of treatments varies with each individual. In the beginning, after the initial intake, you will be seen in weekly one hour sessions. As you begin to experience improvement, typically within about 4-8 weeks, you and your practitioner will discuss increasing the length of time between your visits until you may find you require treatment on a monthly or seasonal basis. The timeframe with which people notice improvement and begin to space out treatments varies upon individual circumstances.
A growing number of insurance companies will reimburse for acupuncture treatments. Consult your insurer for the terms of coverage on your policy or call our office at 410-296-4222 to verify your acupuncture benefits.