1. How long does each acupuncture session take and how often will I require acupuncture?
Acupuncture works over a course of treatment. For acute conditions such as acute sprains, gastroenteritis, fever, menstrual cramps, continuous acupuncture treatment is required. Each course of acupuncture treatment requires 5 sessions, recommended to be administered once daily or once every 2 days.
For chronic conditions such as cervical spondylosis, slipped disc, sciatica, arthritis, frozen shoulder and other chronic pain ailments or degenerative conditions, each course of acupuncture treatment normally requires 10 sessions. Depending on the patient’s condition, number courses of acupuncture treatment and treatment frequency may vary. Internal medicine conditions may require acupuncture treatment once or twice per week, while acupuncture sessions for menstrual cramps or fertility issues are scheduled based on the patient’s menstrual cycle.
2. How does acupuncture work?
TCM sees the human body as a whole; every organ is connected to each other by meridians. Each meridian branch out to connect different organs, limbs and bones, forming a network around the body. Acupuncture targets acupoints distributed on these meridians, and works to balance yin and yang and stimulate flow of qi and blood. Through these effects, acupuncture is able to relief pain, restore normal body functions and improve the immune system.
3. Are young children suitable for acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a commonly used TCM treatment method, capable to restoring normal body functions, and has a low rate of mainly minor adverse effects. Young children are also suitable for acupuncture. However, it is to be noted that young children can be frightened by acupuncture needles, hence parents and physicians should work closely during each acupuncture session. Physicians normally select thinner, shorter needles during acupuncture for young children, and avoid leaving the needles on for too long to reduce fear in young children.
4. Are there any side effects from acupuncture treatment?
Acupuncture is a fully natural form of treatment without the use of any medication, and hence will not cause any unpleasant side effects in the body. During acupuncture, however, one may expect a slight prickling sensation when acupuncture needles are administered, and minimal bleeding might occur upon the removal of acupuncture needles. It is important to engage professional TCM clinics and physicians for acupuncture treatment. It is also noteworthy that acupuncture may not be suitable for all kind of conditions, so do seek advice from professional TCM physicians to understand whether acupuncture, or other forms of treatments, will be more suitable for your condition.
5. How should I prepare myself for an acupuncture treatment?
Before acupuncture, try to remain calm and relaxed. Acupuncture should be avoided when you are hungry, overly satiated, or under extreme fatigue.
6. Are there any restrictions after an acupuncture session?
It is advisable to avoid direct cold or wind after acupuncture. Bathing/shower should be done 2-3 hours after acupuncture. Ensure sufficient rest 1-2 days after acupuncture.
7. I experience localised pain and swelling after acupuncture, is this normal?
During administration of acupuncture needles, you may experience a slight prickling sensation akin to a mosquito bite. When the acupuncture needle hits the correct acupoint, it will cause a typical “de qi” sensation characterised by localised soreness and numbness. Patient may mistake this “de qi” sensation for pain. This sensation is due to stimulation of the acupoints by acupuncture needles. Some patients may experience slight swelling of skin around the acupuncture spot, which may be due to stimulation from the alcohol disinfectant or administration of acupuncture techniques which may affect micro capillaries under the skin. Mild swelling and bruising in will recover in a few days without requiring further treatment.
8. Can I have acupuncture if I am pregnant?
It is not advisable for pregnant ladies to undergo acupuncture treatment, acupoints for stimulating blood circulation around the stomach, waist and limbs should be avoided.
9. I have diabetes, is acupuncture safe for me?
Diabetic patients with skin lesions should avoid acupuncture.
10．Can I benefit from acupuncture even though I do not have any reason to get medical treatment?
For people without any medical conditions, it is beneficial to do acupuncture too. There are several acupoints that help with improving general health by stimulating circulation of qi and blood in the meridians. Professional TCM physicians will be able to select acupoints according to the individual’s constitution to achieve better health management through acupuncture.