Acupuncture is the ancient Chinese tradition of inserting fine needles in to specific points in channels along the body according to the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). TCM is based on the theory of Qi, the energy that flows through the body. Illness can be seen as a dysfunction of the body's ability to maintain the smooth flow of Qi and so the body becomes unbalanced. Acupuncture aims to treat the person as a whole and restore the natural balance between physical and emotional.
On your first session a full medical history will be taken to allow the practitioner to assess your general health as well as the specific problem you have come for. You may be asked about your sleep patterns, diet and your emotional state. Your pulse may be felt on both wrists to discover how the energy is flowing in the body. The colour and coating on your tongue can also give a good guide to your general health.
Depending on your condition you may be asked to remove some clothing and lie on the treatment couch.
Acupuncture uses very fine solid needles, when inserted the sensation is often described as a tingling or a dull ache. The needles are left in place for about 20 minutes, during that time you may have a feeling heaviness in the limbs and feeling of deep relaxation.
Acupuncture is a safe treatment for all. Children, adults and the elderly may all benefit from acupuncture treatment. It is safe to have throughout pregnancy.
Each person is considered as unique and so the number of treatments will depend on the person. Some change might be felt after two of three treatments whereas in some chronic conditions it may take longer. Normally you would visit the acupuncturist once or twice weekly at first, although some conditions require less frequent treatments.