The Acupuncturist will question you to gain an all-round picture of your situation, make observations of your tongue and pulse and undertake a physical examination if appropriate. What the Acupuncturist is looking for, is not any symptom in isolation, but rather a pattern into which is woven a total picture of the patient. Tongue and pulse diagnoses are highly refined in Chinese medicine.
For your initial visit the Practitioner allows enough time to gather information on:
(a) your symptoms, the history and treatment to date;
(b) your medical and family history;
(c) the behaviour of your various systems, eg how you sleep, whether your digestion is good;
(d) your physical condition, eg distribution of body heat or the condition of your skin.
The number of treatments required depends entirely on the problem. Generally, the more recent the illness, the fewer treatments are required.
Disposable needles only are used. The needles are used once and once only before being disposed of.
DOES IT HURT?
The needles used are solid and much finer than those used for injections or withdrawing blood. In most cases, only a slight prick is felt when the needle goes through the skin. When the needle reaches the Acupuncture point there is another sensation, often described as a tingly or numb feeling. The sensation is pleasantly relaxing. There are no harmful side-effects.