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lancelotarnold

Benefits & What to expect

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Benefits
Acupuncture can be beneficial in that:

Performed correctly, it is safe.
There are very few side effects.
It can be effectively combined with other treatments.
It can control some types of pain.
It may help patients for whom pain medications are not suitable.
The NCCIH advise people not to use acupuncture instead of seeing a conventional health care provider.

What to expect
According to traditional Chinese medical theory, acupuncture points are located on meridians, through which vital energy runs. This energy is known as "qi" or "chi."

An acupuncturist will examine the patient and assess their condition, insert one or more thin, sterile needles, and offer advice on self-care or other complementary therapies, such as Chinese herbs.

The patient will be asked to lie down on their back, front, or one side, depending on where the needles are to be inserted. The acupuncturist should use single-use, disposable, sterile needles. As each needle is inserted, the patient may feel a very brief stinging or tingling sensation.

After the needle is inserted, there is occasionally a dull ache at the base of the needle that then subsides. Acupuncture is usually relatively painless.

Sometimes the needles are heated or stimulated with electricity after insertion.

The needles will stay in place for between 5 and 30 minutes.

The number of treatments needed depend on the individual. A person with a chronic condition may need one to two treatments a week over several months. An acute problem normally improves after 8 to 12 sessions.

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