What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a form of Chinese medicine that has been practiced for centuries. It's based on the theory that energy, called Qi ("chee"), flows through your body along pathways called “meridians.” Pain and illness occurs when something blocks or unbalances your Qi. Acupuncture is a way to unblock or influence Qi and help it flow back into balance. Acupuncture is performed by putting very thin sterile needles into the skin at certain points to restore balance to the body.
How does acupuncture work?
When Qi in the meridian(s) becomes obstructed, deficient, or excessive, pain and disease occurs. The corresponding organs and muscles do not get their necessary flow of energy and nutrients to properly perform their physiological functions. The meridians communicate with the surface of the body at specific locations called acupuncture points. Needles inserted in these points influence the Qi that flows to internal tissues and organs. Acupuncture can also affect specific areas of pain associated with injury or trauma. A needle inserted near the area of overstrained muscle or tendon will adjust the flow of Qi and nutrients to that area, thereby reducing pain and accelerating the healing process.
Does acupuncture hurt?
The vast majority of patients do not consider acupuncture a painful procedure. Some patients feel a slight 'Qi' sensation when the needle is inserted: most feel nothing at all. These 'Qi sensations' range from warmth or tingling, to a brief ache or heaviness in the area being needled. They indicate favorable results from the acupuncture treatment, as Qi has been strongly contacted. Most patients describe these sensations as calming and the treatment experience to be relaxing.
Are the needles safe?
Yes. Acupuncturists use sterile, disposable needles. They are used once and then disposed of in biohazard containers. These containers are sent to a medical waste management company for proper disposal according to federal laws and regulations.
Is acupuncture covered by insurance?
Some insurance companies will reimburse for acupuncture treatments. Consult your insurance provider to determine the terms of coverage of your policy. If your policy includes acupuncture benefits, we will submit to your health insurance for reimbursement. Most HSA and flex spending accounts can be used to cover acupuncture costs.