Frequently Asked Questions
Does Acupuncture hurt?
- Acupuncture can be intimidating for a first visit, but rest assured acupuncture should never be painful. Some patients describe the sensation as a heavy feeling or distension, and sometimes as if the needle is like a mosquito bite, although some patients report they do not feel the needle insertion at all. When we are needling an acupoint, we are looking to achieve a sensation called the "de Qi", which means that we have accessed the point and meridian. This is when the patient gets a response such as a heavy feeling around the point.
Is Acupuncture covered by MSP? (or other Benefits packages)
- Acupuncture treatments are partially covered by MSP (usually $23 coverage), and most premium benefits packages cover acupuncture treatments. Please contact your own personal benefits provider to inquire, as every benefits package differs.
How many treatments will I need?
- Acupuncture works best in a series of treatments. If you get one treatment, you may notice improvements in your condition and feel relaxed for a day or two afterwards, but if you do not get treated again for another two weeks you can move back to where you started. This is why it is important to book in for a series of treatments for the first couple of weeks (1-2/week), and as symptoms begin to improve after a couple of weeks, you can decrease treatment frequency to once a week, and then once a month for follow up tune-ups until the issue feels completely resolved. Depending on your presenting main complaint, and whether it is a chronic issue that has developed over years, or an acute issue such as an injury, the treatment plans will differ.
Usually for acute cases, it can take regular treatments for 2-3 months to resolve.
For chronic conditions that have taken years to develop, you can expect a treatment plan that is a bit longer, several months to a year.
Every body is different, and depending on how well you can stick to the treatment plan including lifestyle changes, you may notice improvements sooner than listed above. In that case, follow up treatments to maintain balance within the body are recommended.
How many needles are involved in a treatment?
- Usually an acupuncture treatment involves anywhere from 6 to 20 needles, but will always vary depending on the patient and how they are feeling that day. Some days patients will arrive at the clinic and say that they are feeling more tired and weak than usual, in which case we will treat with less needles and a gentler approach. If the patient is feeling strong and wanting a stronger treatment, then we use a few more needles.