On Acupuncture Sessions: What Should I Expect?

thin needles for acupuncture

Just as there are different types of acupuncture (e.g. Sound acupuncture, Korean acupuncture, Veterinary acupuncture, etc.,Keep in mind that acupuncture practitioners actually differ in their approaches when it comes to this alternative medicine. However, there are certain elements which are basically present in every practitioner you will go to for an acupuncture session.


As a treat for yourself during holiday season, you might want to try out acupuncture. However, naturally, first timers get intimidated by the use of needles in acupuncture; this may even cause the prospective patient/client to feel nervous and maybe even think twice about pushing through with the session. And if you’re one of those who are about to undergo acupuncture, you might be feeling what I’ve just said.

Luckily, there is a way for us to reduce your anxiety on this subject and that is by actually providing you the list of what you should expect during your visit. That way, your mind won’t wander and reach negatively far-fetched imaginations about this practice.


Before Acupuncture

  • Interview

A lengthy and detailed interview or assessment is initially done prior to the actual needle-insertion part. Here, the practitioner will be able to assess your problems and concerns so as to create your personal treatment plan. The assessment may take an hour or so.

  • Individualized Plan

Remember that each treatment plan is highly individualized; hence, what your friend may experience in his/her acupuncture session may not be exactly the same as what you will experience in your session. Since you have different symptoms and different concerns, different modes of treatment is understandable.

  • Pulse and Tongue

You might not expect this but acupuncture practitioners will actually look into your pulse and tongue for this guides them objectively. But why tongue? It is believed that your tongue actually reflects your entire body. The color, shape, and the form of your tongue will be taken into account. As for the pulse, you may be asked to relax your arm before they start getting a feel of your radial pulse. All this is done as a form of assessment of the condition of your body.

acupuncture history

During Acupuncture

  • Discomfort

It is normal for you to experience slight discomfort during the part where the practitioner inserts the needles; this may be a mix of anxiety and nervousness in your part especially for those of you who are first timers. The discomfort may enhance when the needle is pushed to the correct depth.  Expect to have around 20 needles, or more, during  your treatment.

  • Needle Stimulation

The practitioner may manipulate the needles by moving or twirling them after they have been placed on your skin. For some, heat may also be applied to the needles. Needle re-stimulation is also to be expected and thus, produce more sensation in your body.

  • Emotional Reaction

Expect the unexpected; a surge of emotion might take over you during the session. This is normal. Let your emotions flow for this is part of the process; however, just make sure the needles are not bent or removed.

After Acupuncture

For many, they feel energized after the session. However, others have also reported feeling spacey; thus, you may need to take some time to relax and bounce back to your normal self after the session. Still, one thing is for sure and that is the fact that acupuncture has been proven, time and time again, to be effective in reducing pain of many forms. 


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