Frequently Asked Questions

 

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one part of a whole spectrum of treatments known as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Acupuncture has been practiced for over 5000 years in China. The basic principle of Acupuncture, which is one modality of treatment of Oriental Medicine, is to realign and rebalance the energy in the body. Acupuncturists insert hair-fine needles into special points on meridians and stimulate the flow of qi which moves in meridians by special needle techniques.

How does acupuncture work?

There are 12 main and 8 extra meridians in your body through which energy flows. These Meridian pathways have been compared to rivers, that bring life-giving water to the land, animals and people who live near them. Within your meridian pathways flow life-giving energy, or Qi (pronounced chee) to every cell, tissue, muscle, and organ in your body. An obstruction in your meridian system can be caused by an injury (trauma), lack of movement, and/or deficiencies or over-abundance of dietary intake.

An obstruction of Qi-flow in your body is like a dam in a river, or a traffic jam on an interstate. If Qi becomes “backed-up” in a particular meridian, there then becomes an accumulation of Qi in that area, which can cause pain. An accumulation of Qi in one area of your body can lead to a depletion of Qi-flow in another area. A deficiency of Qi can lead to fatigue, weakness, or depression. This imbalance of Qi throughout your system will lead to pain, a lack of well-being, or if severe enough or left out of balance for too long, disease.
These meridians and the energy flow are accessible through more than 350 acupuncture points. Illness results from an imbalance of the forces. By inserting needles into these points in various combinations, acupuncture practitioners believe that your energy flow will rebalance.
Modern researches also have found a lot of effects. For example, acupuncture can stimulate the secretion of subtances called endorphins which can kill pain. Acupuncture also can balance the autonomic nervous system and have a obvious effect on the immue system.

Do you use disposable needles?

Yes, we have been using only disposable needles since the opening of our practice. Each needle is discarded into a medical hazard container after single use.

Are there any side effects of acupuncture?

As with any medical treatment, there is a chance of developing unfavorable reactions after acupuncture treatment. Adverse effects of acupuncture reported in the literature include infection, nerve damage, fainting, and puncture injuries to vital organs. These complications, however, are exceptionally unusual, especially under the care of qualified acupuncturists. Tiny bruises around needling sites are not very common but occasionally occur. These usually diminish completely within a week. Compared with medical and pharmaceutical intervention, acupuncture is considered an extremely safe treatment with minimal chance of any complication.

I have tried acupuncture somewhere else before and did not feel any improvement

It is true that not everyone responds well to acupuncture, however, it is important to remember that failure to respond to treatment from one acupuncturist does not necessarily mean that your condition cannot be helped by acupuncture. Each acupuncturist's training background and qualifications vary greatly: While some acupuncturists have completed 3-4 years of full-time courses in acupuncture with additional postgraduate courses, some are providing acupuncture treatments after only a few weekend workshops. Dr. Xu and Dr. Han spent 8 to 10 years in study acupuncture and Chinese medicine in China. They have high education and extensive experience in not only acupuncture but also in a wide range of alternative therapies.

What happens during an acupuncture session?

Yes, we have been using only disposable needles since the opening of our practice. Each needle is discarded into a medical hazard container after single use.

How does acupuncture work?

You can feel the needle inserting your body. But you will not feel painful. Once the needle has reached the correct depth you should feel a slight sensation as the needle contacts the Qi. Its sensation can either be an ache, numbness, a tingling or a sensation of heat. Very occasionally you may feel slightly more sensation from the needles. If this happens it is often a sign that there is more blockage of the qi and a stronger needle manipulation has been required.

How many times do I have to do acupuncture?

It depends on your condition. Usually, we suggest patients do acupuncture 2 to 3 times a week at the beginning to build up the good result fastly. Then it is once a week to retain good results. Most of diseases need the treatments from one week to several months.

Tui Na (Chinese massage)

Tui Na uses special technique to press meridians and acupoints. It focuses on not only the muscles, but also the flow of energy. It can help you relieve pain, relax mind, and improve function of your whole body.

Do the needles hurt?

Yes, we have been using only disposable needles since the opening of our practice. Each needle is discarded into a medical hazard container after single use.

What is Chinese herbs (herbal tea)?

Traditional chinese herbs are leaves, roots, fruits or flowers of plants. They are natual and have no chemical things. According to the natural properties, flavors, directions of qi movement and meridians, TCM doctors select a group of herbs as a formula to treat diseases and change body conditions.

What is Moxibustion?

Moxibustion is carried out by burning a herb close to or on your body. The herb used is Artemisia vulgaris latiflora, which is similar to native mugwort. It is this pungent odour, as well as the warmth given off by the burning of the herb, that provides its healing effect. Moxa is used for three main reasons. First, it warms you up when you have a condition that is particularly “cold” in its nature. Second, moxa can be used to nourish your Qi and blood to restore energy. Third, moxa can promote circulation and free meridians to relieve pain.

What is Gua Sha?

Gua Sha is an ancient healing technique which uses a specialized tool to gently rub the skin over the problem area or along meridians. This practice is used to release muscle tension, tightness and constriction, and patients often say it feels very similar to a deep tissue massage.
Gua Sha removes lactic acid from overused muscles, accidents, stress, tension and trauma and can also promote normal circulation to the muscles, tissues and organs directly below the surface being treated.

What is Cupping?

Cupping refers to an ancient Chinese practice in which a cup is applied to the skin and the pressure in the cup is reduced (by using change in heat or by suctioning out air), so that the skin and superficial muscle layer is drawn into and held in the cup. In some cases, the cup may be moved while the suction of skin is active, causing a regional pulling of the skin and muscle (the technique is called gliding cupping).

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