Acupuncture FAQ


 What kinds of conditions does acupuncture treat?

Acupuncture is an effective treatment for many different types of health concerns, including (but not limited to) chronic and acute pain, respiratory issues, digestive issues, inflammatory conditions, sexual and reproductive health, auto-immune disorders, anxiety and depression, and chronic fatigue. Acupuncture is also a very beneficial ancillary treatment used to mitigate the side-effects of western medical treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy. If you’re not sure your particular condition can benefit from acupuncture, I’d be happy to talk with you on the phone before scheduling an appointment.



 How does acupuncture work?

Although there are aspects of Chinese medicine that correlate with western medicine, its efficacy cannot be fully explained using the language of bioscience. Chinese medicine is an ecological medicine, which takes the entire person into account. The general idea behind acupuncture is to balance the body’s ecosystem. One can think about acupuncture meridians as “rivers” that provide circulation throughout the body, and acupuncture points as areas where we clear blockages, enabling proper circulatory flow.



 What should I expect during an acupuncture treatment?

Most people are pleasantly surprised by the experience of an acupuncture treatment, which often produces a profound level of relaxation. Many patients enjoy a restful nap while on the table. Afterwards, most people report a calm feeling of vitality and an improved sense of well-being.



 Does acupuncture hurt?

Most people are surprised and relieved to learn that acupuncture needles are extremely thin and completely unlike the hypodermic needles they have experienced at their doctor’s office. Acupuncture is not especially painful, nor is it entirely painless. Some say it feels like a dull ache; others describe a warm tingly feeling. This is normal and beneficial. Once the needles are set, the sensation fades, and is most often not felt for the remainder of the treatment. Most people describe a deep and lasting relaxation afterwards.



 Are acupuncture needles safe?

Absolutely! Only sterile, single-use disposable needles are used. Patients are assured that there is no transmission of communicable disease from patient to patient.



 Do I have to be sick to benefit from acupuncture?

Absolutely not! In recent years more and more people have discovered that it is much easier, safer and cost effective to maintain health than it is to recover once it’s lost. Because of its ability to strengthen and nourish proper functioning in the body Chinese medicine can be an important addition to any health program. Patients are advised to come in for monthly or quarterly “tune-ups” as part of their health maintenance routine.



 How frequently do I need to come for treatment?

The frequency of treatments varies with each individual. Most new patients begin treatment with weekly sessions. During this time, significant signs of progress will likely appear. As patients experience improvement in their condition, treatments may be extended to every other week, every three weeks, monthly and eventually seasonally.



 How does one choose an acupuncturist?

With acupuncture increasing in popularity, there is an advent of physicians receiving certification with only 350 hours of training. In contrast, a licensed acupuncturist (L.Ac.) must complete thousands of hours of training in Chinese medicine, including clinical internships, and pass a national examination to be fully licensed by the state credentialing association.



 Should I visit my primary healthcare provider while I am seeing an acupuncturist?

In many cases, this is completely appropriate. The best healthcare combines the strengths of both medicines. In cooperation, they help and enhance the healing process.



 Are acupuncture treatments covered by my health plan?

In many cases, yes. I am an in-network provider with Blue Cross Blue Shield, United Healthcare, Aetna, and Cigna Health Management, and will submit claims on your behalf directly to these insurers if your health plan includes acupuncture benefits. I can help you to determine what your acupuncture benefits are and whether it has conditions or visit limitations. You will be responsible for paying your deductible or co-pay / co-insurance at the time of service.

Additionally, I will provide you with a coded super-bill for your out-of-network health insurer if you believe you have acupuncture benefits – but I am unable to verify benefits for these plans – you must do this yourself. You will be responsible for paying the full fee at the time of service but will receive an out of network reimbursement check from your insurer for their allowable amount.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]