Frequently Asked Questions
What should I know before my first appointment?
Great question! There are a few things that you can do to ensure your visit (as well as other patient’s experiences) are a success:
We are a Fragrance Free Zone: Many of our patients are sensitive to smells. Please avoid wearing any perfume, cologne, or scented lotions to your appointment.
You will be asked to turn off cell phones and electronics: Out of consideration for others, please completely turn off your mobile devices or put them in silent mode.
How can I prepare for acupuncture?
Wear loose fitting clothes that can be easily rolled up above your elbows and knees. Also, you may need to expose your abdomen from your rib cage to the top of your hips, so avoid one piece suits or dresses.
Be sure you have eaten at least a light meal within a few hours prior to arriving.
Avoid alcohol on the day of your treatment.
Avoid overeating immediately before treatment. Being over-hungry increases the risk of nausea or dizziness.
Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated after your appointment
For best results, avoid strenuous activity immediately following a treatment. Set aside enough time so that you are not rushing to and from your visit. Physical strain immediately before or after acupuncture can weaken your body.
Keep a positive attitude and EXPECT positive results. As we follow through on your treatment plan, look for signs of improvement and take encouragement from them. Build an attitude that expects positive results and know that profound healing is possible. Your belief and expectation has an incredibly strong influence on your body, and is a key factor in healing.
How will I know what to do after my treatment?
Keep your notes following your treatment. Remember to keep good mental or written notes as to the response to your treatment. This is important information for you to recognize progress and for you to communicate to your practitioner for optimum treatment strategy and for the practitioner to know if any adjustments must be made to your treatment plan.
What does Integrative Health + Sports Medicine do with my information?
Integrative Health and Sports Medicine practitioners act as separate health care providers. Each provider is individually responsible for their own activities and are not providing health care services mutually or on each other’s behalf. Integrative Health and Sports Medicine providers may share health information as allowed by law or as permitted by you.
How quickly will I see improvement?
Medical advice is always given for your benefit, and your cooperation is essential, so be sure to follow medical advice (feel free to get multiple opinions!). A doctor's treatment or medication prescribed are only part of the program to keep you in good health. As with any medical treatment, healing with acupuncture is a process. Certain conditions may take time and are influenced by many factors. Over time, things should improve and if necessary, we will adjust your treatment plan as we proceed. Changes to your condition can happen faster than anticipated, so enjoy them!
What should I do if I have questions?
Ask them! Bring us questions at any point, especially if you do not understand your treatment or medical advice.
Should I be concerned about reactions to new treatments?
Always report any problems you have with medications, herbs, or other treatment. Different people react differently to the same treatment or drugs. It is possible for Integrative Health + Sports Medicine to properly manage your care only if you tell me about difficulties you are having, or if medications are not effective or causing you discomfort.
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture is the insertion of thin, disposable stainless steel needles through the skin at specific sites to regulate the body’s qi, i.e. oxygen, blood circulation, nerve impulses, hormones, etc. According to Traditional Chinese Medical Theory, qi flows throughout the body in a network of channels and vessels. Acupuncture serves to harmonize and distribute the qi to areas of the body that contain blockages or deficiencies in order to facilitate the healing process.
Is acupuncture painful?
We use sterile, single use, disposable needles. Acupuncture needles are very fine, about a hair’s width, and when inserted by a skilled practitioner cause minimal to no pain. These needles are much smaller than the hollow hypodermic needles used by western medical practitioners. When the needle is inserted, the patient may feel nothing or a slight pinching sensation. Any pain should subside within a few seconds after insertion. Sensation after needle insertion varies widely. Heaviness, tingling, and pulsing sensations around the needle or elsewhere in the body are common experiences which indicate the activation of acupuncture points and the movement of qi and blood in the vessels.
What should I feel during and after treatments?
During the treatment, the experience varies depending upon the nature of the condition. Some patients feel relaxed, others feel energized. Many patients will go to sleep, while others will enter into a meditative state. After the treatment, most patients experience immediate relief, but sometimes it takes up to 24 – 48 hours.
How many treatments will I need?
The number of treatments you will need depends upon your body’s response to acupuncture, and upon the duration, severity, and nature of your condition. Some acute conditions may take as few as one treatment while chronic conditions could take as many as 10 – 20 treatments. As the patient, you have the right to expect that your primary complaint will be addressed and treated in a direct and timely manner.
What conditions does acupuncture effectively treat?
Currently, the NIH has determined that acupuncture is effective in treating over 40 different disease categories. Following is a list of illnesses and conditions for which acupuncture has been proven to be effective. It is possible to treat these and many other conditions with acupuncture and Chinese medicine:
Arm and Shoulder Pain
Attention Deficit Disorder
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Gall Bladder Disorders
Immune System Deficiency
Leg Pain, Cramps
Neck Pain, Stiffness