Acupuncture is a complementary therapy that typically involves puncturing the skin with needles in defined points to relieve pain and reduce the symptoms of certain conditions.
We have several physiotherapists who use acupuncture within the treatment/management plan of numerous conditions and also as an individual course of treatment by itself. All our physiotherapists using acupuncture are members of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (AACP) that ensures all members using acupuncture have received and maintain the necessary training to be able to use acupuncture effectively and competently.
Does it hurt?
The needles used in acupuncture are very different from those used to give an injection or take blood for instance. They are much thinner and the method of insertion means often nothing is felt as the needle is inserted. However in some cases you may feel a very small short lived scratch/sensation. Acupuncture aims to elicit a sensation called ‘De Qi’ which occurs when certain nerve endings/receptors are activated by the needle, at this point you will feel a mild ache but this might only last a few seconds. During the treatment the needles will be stimulated to recreate that sensation. If electro-acupuncture is used you will also feel a tingling tapping sensation at the needle during the treatment. These sensations are required to help stimulate the nerves spinal cord and higher centres in the brain to help achieve the pain relief from acupuncture.
How deep do the needles go?
This depends on the type of problem, area of needling, type of effect desired, style of needling and many other factors. Needles typically range from 10 mm to 100 mm in length. Most will go in somewhere between 10 to 30 mm.
I give blood regularly, will I be able to continue doing this if I have Acupunture?
Yes – all are acupuncturists are registered to provide acupuncture using sterile safe sharps and conditions. If required you can be provided with a special form detailing this that you can take with you to the blood service.
Who should not have Accupuncture?
There are certain groups of people and people with certain conditions/medications that are contraindicated or care needs to be taken if using acupuncture. In general acupuncture is not suitable for people with;
Your physiotherapist will go through a checklist of questions to ensure you are suitable.
How many sessions will I need?
This depends on your problem and response to treatment typically people receiving Acupuncture will have 6-10 sessions to achieve optimum results.
How long does each session last?
Treatment time for acupuncture typically lasts from 20-30 minutes.
Will I be sitting or lying down?
This Depends on your problem and which points will be needled, whatever the situation the physiotherapist will ensure that you are in a comfortable position.
How safe are the needles?
All needles we use are ONE USE only sterile disposable needles that are sourced from reputable healthcare suppliers within the UK.
Should I drive after Acupuncture?
Some people can feel drowsy or lethargic after acupuncture and it is recommended that anyone experiencing these symptoms in the 10 minutes after having acupuncture doesn’t drive or use machinery immediately and have someone drive them home.
Remember if you should have any other questions please feel free to ask at any time.
Our physiotherapists using acupuncture are all members of the AACP (Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists).