Frequently Asked Questions
- What can I expect at my first treatment?
- What should I wear to treatment?
- How long does each treatment last?
- How often do I need to be treated?
- How does acupuncture work?
- How does acupuncture feel?
- How do I cancel or reschedule my appointment?
- What if I’m running late to my appointment?
- Can I be treated if I’m pregnant?
- What is community acupuncture?
- Do you have gift certificates?
- Can I pay a fee for a missed appointment or late cancellation online?
- Can I make an appointment for someone else using my name or account?
- Do you have an elevator?
What can I expect at my first treatment?
Plan to arrive 20 minutes ahead of your scheduled appointment time, so you can check in at the front desk, where you will complete intake forms and pay for treatment. This time also gives you the chance to change clothes, if needed.
Hand the forms to the person at the front desk once you’re done. They will be reviewed by your acupuncturist, who will take you to a private room for consultation. Afterward you will be taken to the treatment area, where you can choose to be treated in any open seat or on a table. Once the needles are in, your acupuncturist will ask if you wish to be covered by one of the mylar blankets we have available. We use them instead of heavier blankets because they are light and do not add extra weight on the needles.
What should I wear to treatment?
We recommend loose, comfortable clothing that gives the acupuncturist access to your knees, elbows, and, in some cases, your back. These areas are important distal points in acupuncture. You may also wish to consider where you may be experiencing pain and to wear clothing that allows your acupuncturist access to that area(s).
How long does each treatment last?
There is no set time limit for each treatment. In our experience, the “right” amount of time for a treatment varies considerably, and people learn after a few treatments when they are “done.” This could be anywhere from 20 to 90 minutes resting with the needles.
You can stay as long as you feel comfortable, or you can let your acupuncturist know ahead of time when you’d like to have your needles removed. We’ll keep an eye on you.
If you need to get our attention, just open your eyes and look in our direction, quietly rustle your blanket, or clear your throat. We’ll come over as soon as we can.
How often do I need to be treated?
The recommended frequency and number of treatments recommended will vary depending on your situation, but generally, acupuncture is most effective when done frequently and regularly. If you have questions about how long it will take to see results, please ask, or if you think you need to adjust your treatment plan, just let us know.
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture stimulates internal resources we already have that we may not be using efficiently. Studies show that insertion of acupuncture needles causes an increase in natural anti-inflammatories; natural pain-killers; regulation of the immune system, hormones, and HPA-axis; circulation of blood and lymph; regulation of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems; alteration of pain signals, plus less well-understood effects such as bioelectrical activity.
The traditional explanation is that blockages occur in the meridians, causing pain and dysfunction. Acupuncture clears the blockages and restores free flow.
How does acupuncture feel?
Many of us associate needles with hypodermics used in injections at the doctor's office, but acupuncture needles share little in common with them. Hypodermic needles are thick and hollow and tear flesh when they enter the body. Acupuncture needles are hair-thin and solid. At least 12 of them can fit into one hypodermic needle.
If there is any sensation on insertion, it does not usually feel like more than a mosquito bite. People are often very surprised that they don’t feel the needles at all or much less than they expected.
We are regularly praised for our gentle technique. During acupuncture, patients commonly experience heaviness in the limbs, a pleasant feeling of relaxation, and may even fall asleep.
Can I cancel or reschedule my appointment?
Please review our cancellation policy for further instruction.
What if I'm running late to the clinic?
Please review our lateness policy for further instruction.
Can I be treated if I'm pregnant?
Definitely! Acupuncture can be so helpful for many conditions that crop up during pregnancy, from morning sickness to sciatica to swelling. All our practitioners have lots of experience treating pregnant people.
What is community acupuncture?
Community acupuncture is a return to the way acupuncture is commonly practiced in East Asia: in a group setting with appointments staggered throughout the hour. This arrangement allows friends and family to be treated together, offering a less intimidating environment for first-time visitors.
Practitioners conduct initial intake with patients in a private room before moving to an open treatment area, where patients are free to choose where they wish to receive treatment. There is no need to disrobe, because our practitioners mostly use the powerful distal points along the arms, legs, head, or back.
Patients receive treatment alongside one another in a calm, restful setting, with returning patients usually able to move directly to the treatment area after check-in with the front desk.
Each practitioner treats 4-6 patients per hour, allowing the clinic to offer services at lower prices without sacrificing quality care. It further allows us to be a social business designed not to make big profits, but to provide a benefit to the community and a sustainable living for our staff.
Do you have gift certificates?
Yes. You can purchase a gift certificate through our online system or at the clinic.
Can I pay a fee for a missed appointment or late cancellation online?
Can I make an appointment for someone else using my name or account?
If you need to make appointments for someone other than yourself, please make a separate account for them. We cannot accommodate new patients in returning patient slots. Also the acupuncturists need to have the correct name in order to review patient charts prior to treatments.
Do you have an elevator?
Unfortunately, we do not have elevator access to our clinic on the second floor.