How many treatments will I need?
Response to treatment can differ considerably from person to person. In most cases, you will experience significant relief after a few acupuncture treatments. Many people experience relief almost immediately, especially from some acute conditions. Treatment of other, long-term (chronic) or complex conditions will probably require more treatment over a longer time.
As a general guideline, think in terms of 4 – 6 sessions. I review progress regularly and keep patients informed at all times.
Remember that the aim of Chinese Medicine is to correct the root cause not just the symptoms.
How frequently should I come?
Initially I like to see people on a weekly basis for the first few treatments. The response to treatment is usually cumulative and so as symptoms begin to improve, the interval between treatments is increased.
Absolutely not! The needles I use are sterile, blister-packed, single use needles.
What does it feel like – does it hurt?
Although acupuncture does not hurt there is generally some sensation associated with it. As the needle is inserted the tiniest of pin-pricks is sometimes felt on the skin surface. This is nothing like the feeling you might associate with having a blood sample taken. The needles are much finer (0.2mm), similar to the width of a human hair and are solid rather than hollow.
When the acupuncture point is then arrived at (usually 2 – 5mm below the skin surface) most people experience what they describe as a dull ache or tingling sensation. This often leaves people, for the duration of the treatment, feeling half-way between awake and asleep – i.e. very relaxed.
Are there any side effects?
It is quite common after having acupuncture for the first time to feel a little light-headed or tired directly after treatment or later on in the day. This is a perfectly normal treatment reaction and is nothing to be concerned about.
It is uncommon for this to happen after subsequent treatments.
Acupuncture can cause the body to become a little dehydrated so it’s a good idea to drink an extra glass or two of water after treatment.
Very occasionally a bruise can appear at the site where you have been needled; this is minor and disappears completely after a few days.
The most commonly reported ‘side-effect’ is one of being less stressed, less easily ruffled in daily life, more in control.
Do I have to believe in it for it to work?
Acupuncturists have successfully brought relief from medical symptoms in dogs, cats, horses and other animals, “patients” that clearly have no notion of “believing” in acupuncture. Additionally, thousands of people who did not “believe” in acupuncture have experienced complete relief of their medical symptoms even though they did not “believe.” Acupuncture works on your body’s autonomic systems, so belief in its effectiveness is not necessary for it to produce results.
Will my insurance company cover it?
Whether an insurance company will cover treatment varies depending on the policy. Listed below is a range of insurance companies that may cover acupuncture treatments carried out by a British Acupuncture Council member. Contact your provider for more information.
* Aviva health Uk Limited
* Buck & Willis Health Care Ltd
* Bupa Cashplan (not BUPA)
* CS Healthcare
* Forester Health
* Hospital Saturday Fund
* SimplyHealth (formerly HAS)
* Leeds Hospital Fund
* Legal & General Healthcare
* Pinnacle PLC
* Royal & Sun Alliance Healthcare and Assistance
* Standard Life Health Care
* Sun Alliance Health Insurance
How much does it cost?
Initial consultations and treatment (about 1 ½ hours): £58
Follow-up treatments (about 45 mins): £45