What to expect
Who has acupuncture?
Many people come to acupuncture for help with specific symptoms or to relieve specific pains like osteoarthritis of the knee. Some use acupuncture because the feel generally unwell but have no obvious diagnosis. Others choose acupuncture simply to enhance their feeling of wellbeing. Acupuncture is considered suitable for all ages including babies and children. It can be used effectively alongside conventional medicine.
What happens when I go for treatment?
The acupuncturist will use a number of different diagnostic methods to get a complete picture of your health and lifestyle, including taking a full medical history, reading your pulses and looking at your tongue. Based n this information, the acupuncturist makes a diagnosis and puts together your personal treatment plan. Accupuncture points are selected according to your symptoms. the single-use sterile needlescome in sealed packs: they should be opened infront of you and are safely disposed of after each treatment.
What does it feel like?
Acupuncture needles are much finer than needles used for injections and blood tests. When the needle is inserted you may feel a tingling sensation or a dull ache.
Is it safe?
The results of two independent surveys published in the British Medical Journal in 2001 (MacPherson et al, White et al, both BMJ September 2001) concluded that the risk of serious adverce reaction to acupuncture is less than 1 in 10,000. The needles used are single-use, sterile and disposible. Responses to treatment can sometimes include tiredness or mild dizziness and very occasionally minor bruising may occur. However all such reactions are short-lived.
Should my doctor know?
If you have been prescribed medication we recommend you tell your doctor you are planning to have acupuncture. Do not stoptaking your medication. You should always tell your acupuncturist about any medication and supplements you are taking as this may affect your response to the acupuncture treatment. BAcC acupuncturists are trained to recognise potentially serious underlying health conditions and may refer you to your GP if they consider it appropriate.
How many sessions will I need?
Frequency and number of sessions depend on your individual condition. Some change is usually felt within five or six treatments, although occasionally just one or two are sufficient. Some people choose to have regular acupuncture to maintain good health.