Your First Visit
Upon your first arrival into the clinic, there will of course be paperwork to fill out! There will be things you may recognize from a typical doctor's appointment, but there will also be plenty of new experiences. The acupuncture intake form includes questions about your current state of health, past illness, and family history. There will also be questions that are seemingly unrelated to your symptom or concern. Oriental medicine is a 'holistic' medicine, meaning we look at the body as a whole as opposed to the symptoms alone. Every aspect of our health and lives are interrelated. I want to make sure your symptoms and discomfort not only go away, but stay away. In order to do so, we work together to address both the root and the branch of the concern. By getting to the cause of discomfort, we treat the symptoms, even those not discussed or of your primary concern. Our bodies are complex landscapes and everything that happens to them leaves its mark.
Once the paperwork is complete, we meet one on one to discuss your condition and concerns. I will examine your pulse and tongue, two traditional diagnostic methods of Oriental medicine that provide me with the story of imbalance. I then insert the micro-fine needles into specific points along certain meridians in order to elicit the physiological response your body needs. On average, 15-20 needles are used. The most common points are located below the knees and elbows, the back or abdomen, and occasionally the head, face, or ears. Depending on the condition, a hot pack with castor oil will be applied to benefit the digestion, overall relaxation, or the area of pain. You will rest comfortably with the needles for approximately 15-30 minutes while listening to soothing music. Aromatherapy is also available. A 5-10 minute massage will be included at the end of the treatment.
Many people find acupuncture treatments deeply relaxing, and it is not uncommon for patients to fall asleep during this time.