What is Acupuncture?
The insertion of fine, sterile needles into the body at specific points which are effective in the treatment of specific disorders.These points lie along various meridians, or pathways of energy flow in the body. In Chinese Medicine, symptoms or disease are the manifestation of an imbalance of energy in the body, which can be corrected by the stimulation of points along the appropriate meridians. Acupuncture is complimentary to modern western medicine and may be used in conjunction for optimal results.
First time Expectations?
The first treatment will entail filling out a comprehensive health history questionnaire. Since acupuncture treats the whole person (body, mind and spirit), it is essential to have a complete picture of the individual. After the practitioner reviews this material with the individual, takes their pulses and looks at the tongue, point selection is determined based on the Chinese Medicine diagnosis determined at that time. For a typical treatment, the patient lies down in a comfortable environment. 8 to 14 needles are inserted in the appropriate points for approximately 20 to 30 mInutes. The needles are sterile, disposable and very fine and upon insertion the patient may feel a mild prickling sensation. The patient often feels quite relaxed during and following a treatment.
How many Treatments?
The number of treatments required varies depending on the individual’s health status. As a general rule, acute conditions may require several treatments whereas long term or chronic difficulties will require a longer course of treatments. A series of 10 treatments at weekly or biweekly intervals is commonly recommended and adequate for average situations. The patient will be the best judge of their response to acupuncture and they have the right to expect that their specific complaint(s) will be treated in a timely and professional manner.
Does Insurance cover Acupuncture?
Few insurances cover acupuncture in Minnesota. As of yet medicare and medical assistance does not. Refer to your policy and if acupuncture is covered, a statement will be prepared with necessary information for the patient to submit to their insurance company for reimbursement. If you have a medical expense account through your employer or a Health Savings Account one generally needs to submit a receipt for reimbursement.
My interest to learn of medicines from around the world has been piqued since I began my studies of acupuncture/oriental medicine in 1990. Having worked as a Registered Nurse I had a strong base in western medicine or allopathic medicine, only to realize there are many integrative therapies that complement western medicine and that it would be in the best interest for our health to blend the best of all medicines. As a result of this interest and my desire to make our planet a healthier place, I have taken a few life changing trips to underserved parts of the world.