What to Expect From Your Treatment

Before your treatment

Before your first acupuncture session please consider the following:
• many commonly used acupuncture points are located on the lower arms and legs, so it is helpful to wear clothing that allows easy access to these areas;
• try not to go for treatment on an empty stomach or straight after a heavy meal.

Your first consultation

During your first visit we will talk about your main complaint and your general health and lifestyle. This involves asking questions about your current symptoms and your medical history, as well as such things as your sleeping pattern, your appetite and digestion, and your emotional wellbeing.

I will also take your pulse on both wrists, look at your tongue and, if necessary, may also feel for areas of muscular tension or pain.

Your first consultation and treatment will usually last up to 60 minutes and follow-up treatments – 45-60 minutes.

Treatment plan and treatment

Based on all the information you have given, I will make a diagnosis and put together your treatment plan, which may include lifestyle and dietary advice as well as acupuncture. I will then use very fine single-use pre-sterilised needles to stimulate specific acupuncture points on your body. Because energy meridians range across the whole body, the points used are not necessarily close to where you experience pain or discomfort. For example, if you suffer from headaches needles might be inserted in your foot or hand.

Auricular (ear) acupuncture

Auricular or ear acupuncture is considered to be a “microsystem” of acupuncture that can be used on its own or to complement the complete full-body treatment. It is commonly and effectively used to treat stress, anxiety and insomnia, to aid overall relaxation and provide a symptomatic relief from pain, as well as to overcome many types of addictions, such as excessive eating, alcohol, cigarettes and recreational drugs. The needles remain in the ears for about 30-45 minutes.

Lifestyle advice

I may also suggest ways in which you can enhance the long-term effects of your treatment. This may involve making changes to your diet and daily routine or, if necessary, referral to other healthcare practitioners for specialist care.

After your treatment

Most people find acupuncture relaxing and often feel very calm after a treatment. You may also feel a little tired or sleepy and should consider this if you are planning to drive or do something very active straight after your treatment.

You should refrain from vigorous exercise after treatment and, ideally, give yourself a little time to rest. It is also advisable not to drink alcohol for several hours after treatment.

Statistically, acupuncture is one of the safest medical treatments, both conventional and complementary.

Please also view some commonly asked questions about acupuncture answered by the British Acupuncture Council.