COPYRIGHT © 2019 by Genna Louise Robinson. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. 

FAQ

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT IS ACUPUNCTURE?

Acupuncture is an ancient medical treatment technique that dates back to as early as 2500 BCE.

 

In current times acupuncture is gaining in popularity as a medical treatment both in the United States and abroad. In the US, more than 10 million acupuncture treatments are administered each year

 

Acupuncture is now accepted by mainstream medicine, and is now offered as treatment option for patients in hospitals in both the US and abroad, as well as in the US Military Healthcare System. The US Food and Drug Administration also recommends that doctors learn about acupuncture for pain management.

 

During a treatment hair-thin single-use sterilized needles are inserted at specific points on the body. While research is still being done to determine the mechanism of action behind acupuncture’s effects, studies have shown that acupuncture helps stop pain by:

 

  • stimulating the production of analgesic or “pain-stopping” chemicals like opioids and activating their chemical receptors

  • turning on multiple parts of the brain related to pain and sensory processing

  • decreasing the production of chemicals that induce the “pain response” via the central nervous system

  • increasing blood circulation around the site of needle insertion

  • regulating chemicals that affect inflammation influenced by the nervous system

WHAT CAN ACUPUNCTURE TREAT?

 

Acupuncture is part of Chinese medicine, which is a complete medical system. As such, it is extremely successful in the treatment of a vast multitude of conditions. Many people try acupuncture as a “last resort” for serious and complex medical problems and find it helpful when standard medical treatment was ineffective.

 

Acupuncture is also often used as preventative medicine. Many people see their acupuncturist once very 3-6 months for this purpose to prevent disease and promote wellness and vitality.

 

Your acupuncturist can determine at an initial consultation and exam if acupuncture can help you with your condition.

WHAT PROBLEMS ARE COMMONLY TREATED BY ACUPUNCTURE?

 

The most common ailments people seek acupuncture for are pain-related conditions.

The World Health Organization recognizes acupuncture as being effective for the following diseases and disorders:

  • Abdominal pain (in acute gastroenteritis or due to gastrointestinal spasm)

  • Acne vulgaris

  • ​Adverse reactions to radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy

  • Alcohol dependence and detoxification

  • Allergic rhinitis (including hay fever)

  • Bell’s palsy

  • Biliary colic

  • Bronchial asthma

  • Cancer pain

  • Cardiac neurosis

  • Chloasma Choroidopathy, central serous

  • Cholecystitis, chronic, with acute exacerbation

  • Cholelithiasis

  • Colour blindness

  • Competition stress syndrome

  • Craniocerebral injury, closed

  • Deafness

  • Depression (including depressive neurosis and depression following stroke)

  • Diabetes mellitus, non-insulin-dependent

  • Dysentery, acute bacillary

  • Dysmenorrhoea, primary

  • Earache

  • Epidemic haemorrhagic fever

  • Epigastralgia, acute (in peptic ulcer, acute and chronic gastritis, and gastrospasm)

  • Epistaxis, simple (without generalized or local disease)

  • Eye pain due to subconjunctival injection

  • Facial pain (including craniomandibular disorders)

  • Facial spasm

  • Female infertility

  • Female urethral syndrome

  • Fibromyalgia and fasciitis

  • Gastrokinetic disturbance

  • Gouty arthritis

  • Headache

  • Hepatitis B virus carrier status

  • Herpes zoster (human (alpha) herpesvirus 3)

  • Hyperlipaemia

  • Hypertension, essential

  • Hypo-ovarianism

  • Hypophrenia

  • Hypotension, primary

  • Induction of labour

  • Insomnia

  • Irritable colon syndrome

  • Knee pain

  • Labour pain

  • Lactation, deficiency

  • Leukopenia

  • Low back pain

  • Male sexual dysfunction, non-organic

  • Malposition of fetus

  • Ménière disease 

  • correction of Morning sickness

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Neck pain

  • Neuralgia, post-herpetic

  • Neurodermatitis

  • Neuropathic bladder in spinal cord injury

  • Obesity

  • Opium, cocaine and heroin dependence

  • Osteoarthritis Pain due to endoscopic examination

  • Pain in dentistry (including dental pain and temporomandibular dysfunction)

  • Pain in thromboangiitis obliterans

  • Periarthritis of shoulder

  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (Stein–Leventhal syndrome)

  • Postextubation in children

  • Postoperative convalescence

  • Postoperative pain

  • Premenstrual syndrome

  • Prostatitis, chronic Pruritus

  • Pulmonary heart disease, chronic

  • Radicular and pseudoradicular pain syndrome

  • Raynaud syndrome, primary

  • Recurrent lower urinary-tract infection

  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy

  • Retention of urine

  • Renal colic

  • Rheumatoid arthritis

  • traumatic Schizophrenia Sialism, drug-induced

  • Sciatica

  • Sjögren syndrome

  • Small airway obstruction

  • Sore throat (including tonsillitis)

  • Spine pain, acute

  • Sprain

  • Stiff neck

  • Stroke

  • Temporomandibular joint dysfunction

  • Tennis elbow

  • Tietze syndrome

  • Tobacco dependence

  • Tourette syndrome

  • Ulcerative colitis, chronic

  • Urolithiasis

  • Vascular dementia

  • Whooping cough (pertussis)

 

DOES ACUPUNCTURE HURT?

This is the #1 most common question asked about acupuncture. This is because if you’ve ever had an injection or had blood drawn, you know that being stuck with a needle can hurt. However, acupuncture needles are so hair-thin that they are virtually painless when inserted.

After insertion, the practitioner adjust the needle to the appropriate depth within the body tissue. When this happens you will usually experience one of several very unique sensations. These can include:

  • Tingling

  • Warmth

  • Dullness

  • Heaviness

  • Mild aching

 

Each person’s experience of acupuncture is different. Your comfort during treatment is an important factor in the treatment’s effectiveness. Should you feel any discomfort during the treatment, inform the practitioner so that they can adjust the needles, giving you the best treatment experience possible.

DO YOU OFFER OTHER TREATMENTS LIKE CUPPING, GUA SHA, MOXIBUSTION, ETC.?

The other Chinese medicine-based treatment modalities we offer include:

 

  • ​Cupping

  • Gua Sha

  • Tui Na

  • Infrared heat lamp

  • Ear seeds

  • Application of herbal topical medicines

WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING MY INITIAL VISIT?

At your first visit the practitioner will perform an initial consultation with you to get information about your health concerns.

During the consultation the practitioner will gather a complete history of your condition. This will include questions about the condition itself, but also questions about your overall health and constitution so your condition can be understood within a bigger picture so that the most suitable treatment approach for your body’s needs can be determined—this is part of the holistic medical approach.

The practitioner will then take your pulse, and sometimes examine your tongue, palpate your abdomen, or check for tender areas on the limbs or torso.

The initial visit usually lasts about 90 minutes. Subsequent visits usually last about 60 minutes.

HOW OFTEN DO I HAVE TO COME?

The frequency and length of a course of acupuncture treatment depends on the severity and chronicity of the condition being treated. At the first visit a treatment plan will be recommended to you regarding the course of treatment that is right for you.

In general, treatment plan for acupuncture requires:

  • 1-3 visits per week for the first two weeks

  • 1-2 visits per week for the next 4 weeks

  • 1 visit per week after the first 6 weeks

 

Once the condition is under control and you are symptom free, treatments can be done with less frequency or on an as-needed basis.

HOW MANY TREATMENTS WILL I NEED?

 

Problems that have persisted for a long time usually take more treatments to resolve than ones with recent onset. That said, the patient should expect that their major complaint will be addressed and treated in a manner as direct and timely as possible.

 

In general:

  • for the management or resolution of chronic disorders (i.e. disorders that have persisted for 3 months or more) 10-20 treatments is adequate

  • some acute conditions (i.e. disorders that have persisted for 1 week or less) may only require a single treatment

  • some degenerative disorders may require 40 treatments or more, or ongoing treatment for management on either a regular or as-needed basis

 

 

HOW CAN I PREPARE FOR MY SESSION?

As a general guideline, it is good to eat about 2 hours before an acupuncture appointment.

You should not receive acupuncture on a stomach that is too full because the energy needed for the treatment will already be tied up in the digestive process. However, you should also avoid getting acupuncture on an empty stomach, otherwise you might feel lightheaded or weak during the treatment as the body might not have enough energy needed for the treatment, and the efficacy of the treatment will be compromised. If this occurs, inform your practitioner immediately and they will take the appropriate actions to alleviate these symptoms.

 

It is best to wear shorts or loose-fitting clothing so that the arms, legs and abdomen are easily accessible.

Do not engage in strenuous activity, consume alcohol or caffeine, or smoke excessively before or after your treatment. This will allow the body to calibrate itself to the effects of the acupuncture treatment to maximize the therapeutic effect.

CAN I RECEIVE ACUPUNCTURE IF I AM PREGNANT?

 

Yes. However, since there are some acupuncture points that should not be used during pregnancy, you must inform your practitioner if you are pregnant or are planning on becoming pregnant.

WILL MY INSURANCE COVER MY TREATMENTS?

 

Spirit House Acupuncture & Herbal Medicine currently accepts out-of-network benefits from several health insurances plans.

If you would like us to verify your acupuncture coverage under your current health insurance plan, please bring your insurance card and ID to your next visit.

You can also check your benefits by filling out this online verification form here.

If you find out that your current insurance provider does not cover acupuncture, you might want to consider looking into Blue Cross Blue Shield's PPO plan, United Healthcare and Cigna.

CAN I USE MY HEALTH SPENDING ACCOUNT (HSA) OR FLEXIBLE SPENDING ACCOUNT (FSA) CARD TO PAY FOR ACUPUNCTURE & HERBAL MEDICINE?

 

Yes! We accept both HSA and FSA cards to pay for both acupuncture and herbal medicine prescriptions.

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