It’s important to commit to healing and get the most out of your treatments. Here are some tips to prepare yourself for acupuncture and ensure that you receive the maximum benefit from your sessions with a licensed acupuncturist. Only visit a licensed acupuncturist.
- 1-2 Hours prior to your acupuncture appointment eat a snack or light meal. You do not want to be starving but you also do not want to be overly full. Avoid greasy, heavy foods, and caffeine that could upset your stomach or make your nervous system more active.
- If you are asked to fill out forms, fill them out honestly and thoroughly. Do not shortchange yourself by responding as you think your acupuncturist might want or by omitting bad habits. Some questions may seem unrelated to your current condition but keep in mind that acupuncture is a holistic practice and deals with the interrelationship of all aspects of your body, mind, and spirit. The most effective personalized treatment plan will come from honest answers and a comprehensive health history. Be sure to inform your acupuncturist of other treatment you are currently receiving as well as any medications you are taking.
- Refrain from alcohol and drugs for a minimum of 12 hours before your session. Avoid caffeine within a few hours of your treatment or avoid it all together on that day. Do not brush your tongue before your treatment. This allows your acupuncturist to accurately detect the color, texture, and coating on your tongue, useful as a diagnostic tool.
- Wear underwear to your session, as you will be asked to lie in your under clothes. This allows for ease in accessing the acupuncture points and viewing the structures of the body, as well as for your comfort. Towels and blankets will be supplied should you like to use them.
- Share your pertinent questions with your acupuncturist so that you feel well-informed, but also realize that Chinese medicine is a process that you will want to allow to unfold under the care of your qualified licensed acupuncture practitioner.
- Once the needles have been inserted and your acupuncturist leaves the room, experience the treatment. It is quite relaxing.
- For the rest of the day after an acupuncture treatment avoid alcohol, stressful situations, caffeine, sex, strenuous exercise, food or beverages that are heavy, rich, greasy, or spicy, and avoid being exposed to the elements or going swimming.
- You may feel tired after a session so take it easy, drink some herbal tea and be in a comfortable balanced temperature and atmosphere. If you are drowsy or spacey you should rest. If not, it is fine to go to work, go to school, or other normal activities following treatment, but avoid over-exerting yourself.
- Be realistic. There is no such thing as an instant cure. It may take several sessions before you feel relief.
- After your acupuncture treatments, note how you felt during and after sessions. Share these observations with your practitioner so any necessary adjustments can be made.
Once you have undergone your first acupuncture treatment you will have a clearer sense of the process. Taking care of yourself before and after an appointment will assist your body’s healing capabilities. Keep an open mind. Positive energy always speeds healing.