Common Questions About Acupuncture
What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is an effective Chinese medical treatment that originated over several thousand
years ago. Acupuncture is now widely used throughout the world; in California, acupuncture
has been recognized as a primary health care profession.
Chinese medicine theories describe flows of energy “ QI ” and blood “ XUE” which move freely
through the body. When the flows are either absent, deficient or interrupted, the result is
illness, pain, loss of function or deterioration.
Acupuncture is a natural healing technique based on natural laws and principles. Fine, pre-
sterilized needles are inserted into the body at specific points that have been proven effective
in treating and rebalancing the flow of “ QI” and “ XUE”. This allows the body to self heal.
Acupuncture is not only used to treat illness, but also to prevent illnesses. It strengthens the
physical body, prevents disease and permits longevity. Acupuncture is not limited to merely
alleviating or eliminating symptoms, it focuses on the body’s overall health and tunes all the
functions and organs of the body (including physical, mental, emotional and spiritual) and
keeps them running properly and harmoniously.
Acupuncture has been approved by the FDA and recognized by the National Institute of Health
(NIH) and World Health Organization (WHO) as an effective treatment for a wide range of health
Are the Needles Sterile?
Yes. Only the highest quality, stainless steel, disposable needles are used. These needles
come in pre-sterilized sealed packets and are discarded after use. The FDA has deemed
acupuncture needles “safe and effective”.
Because the needles are ultra-thin and insertion is done quickly and easily, most patients
hardly feel anything at all. Some patients may feel a very slight sensation upon the needle’s
entry; however, the feeling is only momentary and is far less unpleasant than conventional
What is the Treatment Process Like?
A typical session lasts from 20 to 30 minutes. During this time the points may be stimulated by
twirling the needle or applying a small electrical current. Heat may also be used to stimulate the
acupuncture points. After the session most patients feel relaxed, some even energized. If
possible, don’t return to stressful or heavy work right after the session.
How Effective is Acupuncture?
According to the report of the Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Alliance, a study in six clinics
in five states showed the efficacy and cost savings of acupuncture. Of the patients treated with
acupuncture, 91.5 % reported disappearance or improvement of symptoms; 84% said they see
their MDs less; 79% said they use fewer prescription drugs; and 70% of those to whom surgery
had been recommended said they avoided it.
According to an NIH panel, if there is no improvement after 10 sessions of acupuncture, further
treatment is unlikely to help.
What If I Absolutely Hate Needles?
There are several alternative methods of treatment that can be chosen instead of acupuncture,
such as Chinese Massage (Tui- Na), moxa, cupping, foot massage, local point exercises and
What is Chinese Massage?
Chinese massage is an integral part of Chinese medicine. Its treatment utilizes many different
hand manipulation techniques on specific points of the body. It is a much more comprehensive
treatment than ordinary massage. Chinese massage not only relieves pain but also treats the
root of the ailment. The treatment is painless and has no side effects. Chinese massage can
treat a wide variety of diseases.
What are Chinese Herbs?
Herbal medicine is the main treatment method in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). With a
2,500 year history TCM is the world’s oldest, continually practiced professional medicine.
The majority of ingredients in Chinese herbal medicine are leaves, flowers, twigs, stems, roots,
tubers, rhizomes and bark. These herbs come in the forms of tea, powder, pills, capsules and
bottled liquid extracts. They are pure and natural and contain no synthetic chemicals, thus
there are few side effects. Each prescription is especially tailored to match individual patient’s
specific symptoms or condition.
How Many Sessions Do I need?
Typically a patient will need 10 to 15 sessions of acupuncture, depending on the severity of the
What is the difference between Western and Chinese Medicine?
Western Medicine generally focuses on the specific complaint and medicines are prescribed to
eliminate that problem. Chinese Medicine more often looks at the entire body system and
focuses on the cause of illness, attempting to bring the entire body back into balance.
Dr. Mindy M. Dai
Valley Acupuncture & Herb Center
2031 W. Alameda Ave., Suite 206
Burbank, CA 91506
- Available in the building parking lot
and free on Sat. & Sun.
- Street parking is always readily
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