what to expect at your first acupuncture session

The first visit is a 75 to 90 minute session.  At your first visit, I will talk with you and examine you to get a good picture of your health and constitution, including gathering information about your health history, current symptoms, lifestyle, diet, and bodily functions.  If pain is your primary complaint, I will likely do some orthopedic tests to assess the involvement of different nerves, muscles, ligaments, and joints in your pain or injury.   I will look at your tongue and feel your pulse on both wrists.  I may also palpate your abdomen and along acupuncture channels on the arms and legs to check for sensitivity, reactivity, and tension in areas relevant to your diagnosis.

Using information from all these sources, I will recommend a treatment plan, choose which points to treat, and may recommend an herbal formula.  In general, I treat people lying down on a massage table.  The position will vary depending on your comfort and what areas of the body I need to access.  Most often you will be lying on your back and I will mostly use points on the extremities.  While the needles are in, I will leave you to relax by yourself for 20 to 40 minutes.

I may also use cupping or gua sha therapy if these modalities may benefit your condition.