What to Expect from your Acupuncture Appointment
What happens when you come to see me for a Chinese Medicine appointment? Firstly, I like to get to know you. What you do, why you have come to me and everything that is going on in your life. In Chinese medicine we believe that everything is interconnected and interrelated. It is a preventative medicine, so my aim is to treat the cause and stop your issue from recurring. Once you have told me your story, I look at your tongue. I can tell a lot about your body from your tongue. I look at the tongue colour, the shape, the coating and any marks, patterns or swellings that can be seen. Then I feel your pulse on both wrists and this also gives me a better understanding of what is happening in your body.
I like to give an explanation about how Chinese Medicine interprets your dis-ease and what I can do for you. This most likely will involve acupuncture (some people don't like needles so we find other ways to get results), sometimes cupping or moxibustion and occasionally gua sha (a scraping technique that releases pain/fever). Food is medicine, so I will usually offer dietary advice, foods to avoid and foods to eat more of. I like to keep this simple and do-able. The more you can easily do for yourself, the better you will feel. Chinese Medicine works by allowing your body to heal itself, it directs your body to do its job. Once the needles or cups are in/on I make sure that you are comfortable and have some relaxing music playing. If you are feeling relaxed and safe I leave the room to allow you to relax further and allow your body to heal. After 20 minutes I return and remove the needles or cups.
A question I am commonly asked is how long will it take to treat? This varies from person to person. Some people respond very quickly to the needles and others take longer to get results. A good guide to go by is that if you have had the problem for three years, then it is likely to take at least three months of regular appointments to treat it. I like to see you weekly for the first three to four weeks. This is reassessed at every appointment depending on how you are going. Appointments are then stretched out to every two weeks and then monthly. I suggest that regular appointments every four to six weeks is a great way of preventing ill health and living in wellness.
Some clients find that they feel so much better after the first one or two appointments, that with the following appointments they don't have as big a shift in their symptoms. This is when Chinese Herbal Medicine can help to relieve symptoms between appointments. There is also sometimes a plateau period where symptoms don't feel like they are getting any better- despite feeling so much better than they did when they first came in! This too passes and your body learns how to heal itself as you are able to manage your health and wellness.
Myself and my clients are constantly amazed at the changes Chinese Medicine makes to their lives.