You can expect your first visit to last about an hour. I will begin by asking you to fill out a complete medical history form, which we will discuss in detail to determine your health history and the issues you wish to address.
This will give me an overview of your general health history, an understanding of the development of your chief complaints and will allow you to bring up any questions you may have. I will then observe your tongue and feel your pulse. These steps are part of Traditional Chinese Medical diagnosis and help me to evaluate your overall health and to determine which acupuncture points and which Chinese Herbal formulae and/or supplements might be relevant to your treatment if needed.
I’ll then discuss the course of treatment I feel will benefit you most, the number and frequency of visits and the relevance of such modalities as acupuncture, Tuina massage, cupping, moxibustion, electro acupuncture, herbal prescriptions, EFT, nutrition and exercise in the overall treatment plan.
It is always difficult to determine precisely what will be needed at the beginning of a course of treatment. Typically for a chronic condition that is older than three months, a minimum of six to ten treatments might be necessary. The effects of acupuncture are cumulative and I usually expect patients to feel some improvement after three to four treatments in a chronic condition and sometimes immediately in an acute condition of recent onset.
Most people are understandably nervous about getting their first acupuncture treatment. It is important to remember that the needles are hair thin, very rarely cause bruising and are not hollow. They do not hurt like getting an injection or having blood drawn.
Many patients experience a sense of profound relaxation and well being during the treatment. Because of this, I think you will find your treatment will be a source of pleasure rather than anxiety.