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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I still use your services if I am on prescription medications or currently being treated by my doctor?

Absolutely! I practice integrative medicine which means that I support the integration of Western and Eastern medicine. Many of my patients are currently being treated by their doctor or are currently on prescription medications. I always support my patients in the choices they make.

Chinese Medicine can complement your current treatments. And with your consent, I am always happy to discuss your treatments with your doctor or practitioner.

What can I expect on my first visit?

My office offers different types of appointments customized to suit the reason for your visit. Please call my office to learn about the different types of appointments available.

During your visit, I will ask a variety of questions regarding your specific health issues and general health. From this information, I will make specific suggestions and together we will devise a treatment plan to restore and balance your health.

How should I prepare for my acupuncture treatment?

It is recommended that patients eat a light meal or snack before coming for an acupuncture treatment. Depending on the reason for treatment, I may recommend to refrain from rigorous exercise an hour before and after treatment.

How many treatments will I need?

The number of visits will be determined on a case by case basis depending on your health issue and your response to treatments. After the initial visit, I will suggest a treatment plan with the number of treatments recommended.

Is acupuncture safe?

Acupuncture is very safe when performed by a Licensed Acupuncturist. There is little danger of infection from acupuncture needles because they are sterile, used once, then discarded as biohazardous waste.

Do the needles hurt?

The sensation caused by an acupuncture needle varies from person to person. The sensation can vary depending on the location of the body that is being needled and the experience can vary from treatment to treatment. The needles are very thin, just a little larger than a human hair. Once the acupuncture needle is inserted, you may feel a variety of sensations from a vague heaviness, numbness, tingling, or dull ache. Sometimes people feel a sensation of energy moving from the needle. All of these sensations are good and a sign that the treatment is working. The needles are left in place for 20-30 minutes while you relax and listen to soothing music. Most people feel very relaxed and will even fall asleep during the treatment.

To read more, here’s a blog post I wrote, “What it’s really like to have acupuncture.”

What if I am sensitive to needles?

If you are sensitive to needles, I can work with you in many other ways to restore balance and health. Non-needle modalities include acupressure, moxibustion, cupping, Chinese herbal medicine, and holistic counseling.

Are there any side effects of acupuncture?

After an acupuncture treatment most people feel relaxed, revitalized and experience a sense of wellness. The most common side effects that can occur are from the needle insertion, such as bruising or temporary local discomfort. All such side effects will resolve within a couple of days.

Are Chinese herbs safe?

In general, Chinese herbs are safe when recommended by a properly trained practitioner who uses herbs from reputable herbal companies. The benefits of Chinese herbs have been documented by a long historical tradition. In the state of California, licensed acupuncturists (LAc) are required to complete herbal training that includes herb safety. Because herbs can interact with other herbs/supplements and Western pharmaceuticals, it is important that you tell your acupuncturist all drugs and supplements you are currently taking. In addition, as with any introduction of a foreign substance to the body, some people can experience reactions to certain herbs. If you experience any unpleasant side effects when taking Chinese herbs, stop taking the herbs immediately and call your practitioner.

In my practice, I conduct a thorough initial intake with new patients and I review current supplements and pharmaceuticals. I take this information into account along with any known food/substance allergies before recommending an herbal formula. In order to ensure the safety of my patients, I use herbs from reputable companies that guarantee quality. These companies test all of their herbs to be free of contaminants, heavy metals, preservatives, and pesticides.

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