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1019 Kinderhook St (Route 9) | Valatie NY 12184 | 518.758.7711 | info@kinderhookhealing.com

AcupunctureMassage TherapyBY APPOINTMENT ONLY
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Frequently Asked Questions About Acupuncture

What is acupuncture?
Please visit the What is Acupuncture section of the website.

What does it treat?
Please visit the Conditions Treated section of the website.

What if I have a fear of needles?
Fear of needles is a common concern for many who want to try acupuncture. Most people feel more at ease when they realize that the needles are very thin - like hair, unlike the ones they might be accustomed to seeing at a medical doctor's office. The style of acupuncture we use in the office is also very gentle. The practitioner will guide you each step of the way, explaining everything that will be done. If you are still nervous, the practitioner may use relaxation techniques and distraction to draw the focus away from the anticipation of the needles.

Do I need a referral from a doctor to receive acupuncture?
Generally, the answer is 'no.' An acupuncturist is considered a primary care provider and in most cases, you can go directly without need of a referral. However, if you have acupuncture coverage on your insurance policy, it would be a good idea to verify with your carrier that you do not need one. Worker's compensation cases will require a medical doctor referral, as well as an approval from the judge.

Who can get it? Who should not get it?
For the most part, acupuncture is safe for anyone. However, if you have a severely compromised immune system, have a platelet count less than 50,000, and/or have treated with Heparin or Coumadin within the past two weeks with a PT/INR greater than 1.2, you should not receive acupuncture. Intoxicated individuals should also not receive acupuncture, nor will the acupuncturist be willing to treat anyone who is inebriated.

IIt is okay to receive acupuncture while you are pregnant, have a pace maker, or have a metal implant, but please notify the acupuncturist. Your acupuncturist will take this into consideration in formulating your treatment.

What can I expect from a first session?
Please visit The First Visit for more information.

Will my insurance cover acupuncture?
Please visit the Insurance section for more information.

How many treatments will I need? And how often?
Number and frequency of treatments varies from person to person. It also depends on whether your condition is acute or chronic; mild or severe. Your practitioner will discuss a treatment plan and a timeline of care with you at your first visit.

Do the needles hurt?
Needle sensation varies from person to person. Generally, upon insertion, sensation is a mild, mosquito-bite like sensation. Once the needles are in place, the normal range of sensations include pressure, achiness, tingling, heat - and in many cases, you may not even notice that they are in. If you are concerned about pain, inform the practitioner and she will guide you with breathing techniques that will minimize any discomfort.

Where do the needles go?
That depends on what you are being treated for. The most commonly used areas for acupuncture include a combination of points from elbow down or knee down. Acupuncture may also be done on the outer ear, on the abdomen, neck, back and even, very superficially, on the head.

Are sterile needles used?
Yes, the office practices what is known as a Clean Needle Technique. Each acupuncture needle is individually packed and sterile. Needles are never re-used and are tossed after each use. The practitioner always cleans her hands and swabs the treated area with rubbing alcohol before performing acupuncture.

Is there any scientific basis for acupuncture?
Yes, there have been research studies done to identify the mechanisms behind how acupuncture works. While research has not been able to explain all there is to acupuncture, findings do show that acupuncture:
1) relieves inflammation, 2) promotes circulation, 3) releases endorphins - the body's natural painkillers

How do I choose a practitioner?
The most important thing to look for in a practitioner is whether he/she is registered/licensed in your state to practice. Most states that license acupuncturists set rigorous training standards, require a national board exam, require continuing education to ensure the public safety. To verify whether an acupuncturist is licensed in New York, visit the NYS Department of Education online license verification system.

Also important in choosing a practitioner are:
1) How much training has he/she received?
2) Has he/she had any experience with your specific condition?
3) How long has he/she been practicing?

Are there any negative side effects to acupuncture?
Negative side effects are mild and minimal. There may be some soreness, or a bruise, in the area(s) needled. In a small percentage of people, there may be a worsening in their original condition after the first session. This is not a cause for concern as it is part of a normal healing process that is known as a "healing crisis."


 

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