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expect

Your first visit

At your initial consultation you will be asked about your symptoms, general health, sleeping patterns and eating habits to allow us to build up a picture of your health and constitution and any imbalances that may be contributing to your current condition. We will talk about your treatment options and agree an individual plan of care.

We generally work with a combination of acupuncture and dietary and lifestyle advice because we find that this multi-level approach achieves the best results, particularly in the most difficult cases.

As well as acupuncture, your treatment may include moxibustion (the use of a warming herb over areas of the body), cupping, massage or electro-acupuncture to enhance the therapeutic effect of treatment.

Your first treatment lasts one hour – please arrive about five minutes before your appointment in time to fill in a patient record.

… Chinese medicine is based on the principle of personalised treatment …

What to expect

How should I prepare for my first visit?

Many of the acupuncture points used are located on the lower arms and legs, so it is helpful to wear clothing that allows easy access to these areas. Try to avoid being treated on an empty stomach or straight after a heavy meal. You may feel a little tired or sleepy after your session and should take this into account if you are planning to drive or use machinery straight afterwards. It is best to refrain from vigorous exercise and not to drink alcohol for a few hours after treatment.

Does acupuncture hurt?

You may feel a little anxious about your first visit, especially if you haven’t had acupuncture before. So, does acupuncture hurt? Acupuncture needles are hair fine and insertion is generally painless and experienced as a momentary pinching sensation. This is followed by a dull sensation around the needle site as the needle is gently manipulated. Once this settles down your body can feel quite heavy and you quickly slip into a deeply relaxed state, making the session deeply enjoyable. The needles are normally left in place for 20-30 minutes.

What should I expect after treatment?

Expect moderate relief of your symptoms in the beginning and progressive relief of your symptoms over the next few days or weeks of treatment, depending upon how long you’ve had those symptoms. The speed of your response to treatment varies depending upon the severity of your symptoms and your underlying constitution. Occasionally symptoms may flare up briefly after treatment. This is normally short lived and followed by an overall improvement.

How often should I come for treatment?

You will normally be booked in for weekly sessions, or twice weekly if you are suffering from an acute and painful condition. Where your condition is of recent onset it may only require two or three sessions to resolve. Chronic conditions can take longer but generally you can expect to see some positive change within four to five sessions if acupuncture is going to help.

Acupuncture for menstrual problems or infertility is continued for three menstrual cycles and then spaced further apart as the condition resolves.

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