Acupuncture FAQs

Does acupuncture hurt?

You may feel a slight pinprick when the needle is inserted, or you may feel nothing at all. Once the needle is in, the acupuncturist wiggles it gently so that you feel a heavy, warm or tingling sensation. This sensation signals “de qi” (the arrival of qi or energy the point) and shows that a connection has been made between the acupuncture point and your central nervous system.

Is acupuncture safe?

When practiced by a skilled, licensed acupuncturist, acupuncture is extremely safe. Acupuncture points are located in muscle and connective tissue, so the acupuncturist  will not puncture blood vessels or nerve tissue. All needles are pre-sterilized and used only once, so there is no risk of disease transmission.

Will my insurance cover acupuncture?

We accept Cigna and Harvard Pilgrim. If you have a different insurance plan that covers acupuncture, we ask that you pay us in full at the time of treatment and we will help you submit paperwork for reimbursement.

How much does acupuncture cost?

Please call 603 924-3400 (Peterborough) or 603 630-3629 (Portsmouth) for our current rates.

How often should I have acupuncture?

Acupuncture works best when it is done frequently and consistently. I recommend that most patients start with 2 visits per week for 2 to 4 weeks. Acute conditions may respond within just a few treatments while chronic conditions tend to gradually improve over several weeks. After reviewing your case during the first visit, I will recommend how often you should have acupuncture and then re-evaluate your case every 4 visits.

How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture is a balancing treatment that encourages the body to regulate and heal itself. According to the National Institutes for Health (NIH), the insertion and manipulation of acupuncture needles sends subtle biochemical messages to the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). Studies suggest that acupuncture can cause the body to release endorphins (chemicals that inhibit pain), reduce inflammation, improve circulation and stimulate immune activity.

Do I have to believe in acupuncture for it to work?

While a positive attitude may promote healing, we have seen acupuncture work for patients who were skeptical of it and for infants or animals who had no previous experience with it.

Will I feel better immediately or will I have to wait several treatments to see results?

This seems to be different for each individual patient. Generally, patients who respond positively to acupuncture tend to fall into three categories: those who feel relief from their symptoms during and immediately after the treatment; those who feel relief later that same day or the next day; and those who feel relief a few days later. In the beginning, the changes you feel after an acupuncture treatment will fade after a few days. With consistent treatment, the changes you experience should begin to stabilize and remain stable for progressively longer periods of time.

How long do acupuncturists have to go to school?

Most states require that acupuncturists complete a 3 to 4 year graduate-level acupuncture program or its equivalent. This translates into about 2500+ hours of academic and clinical training.  Read more about acupuncture programs here.

 Ready to try acupuncture? Contact us now for an initial evaluation and treatment with Julie Permut, Dipl OM, MAOM, LAc.


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