Acupuncture: The Before, During, and After

Acupuncture is the placement of thin needles at certain points in the body, treating pain and promoting overall wellness. Traditional Chinese medicine explains acupuncture by the “meridians” or special pressure points in the body that stimulate the flow of energy throughout your body. In Western medicine, the placement of needles in these pressure points is said to stimulate nerves and tissues that activate the body’s painkillers.

Acupuncture is apparently able to help with many ailments, ranging from dental pain and menstrual cramps to headaches and even allergies. My therapist recommended I try it because I had been complaining about frequent headaches. I was nervous to try it out but gave it a shot anyway.

 

The Before

Before getting acupuncture done, I was understandably nervous. Even though I have plenty of tattoos and piercings, something about the thin needles in my body scared me. I pulled up to the acupuncturist place not knowing what to expect. When I walked inside, I was greeted by a clean, professional environment and my acupuncturist. I filled out a form with my basic information and described any ailments I had, which included headaches and TMJ (jaw clenching). Then it was time to begin the acupuncture process.

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The During

The acupuncturist took me back to a quiet room where calming music was playing. I told her further about my ailments, and that at the time I was currently having a headache. I lied down on a bed, and the acupuncturist began her job. She first put the needles at pressure points in my feet and ankles. I didn’t feel much pain when the needles were put in — maybe just a little prick. After putting them in my feet, she put some in my hands, followed by my neck, the top of my head, and 2 put in my forehead. 

I was then left alone in the room to relax. At first, when she left, I thought I was going to have a panic attack. I took some deep breaths and quickly got over that slight feeling of panic rushing through my body. I tried my best to relax and stop tensing up. I was able to eventually partially relax, but not fully. She checked on me multiple times to make sure everything was alright. Eventually, after about 25 minutes of lying still with needles in my body, the acupuncturist came back into the room and took them out. When she took them out, I felt nothing, and I got up from the bed, paid, and left.

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The After

After the procedure, I realized that the headache I had had completely gone away during the process. I eventually got one later on that evening, but the acupuncturist said that I would have to come in for multiple appointments before I really saw the long term effects and improvements.

So, would I go again? Yes, I would. And I will. My headache at the time went away during the procedure, which gives me hope that it will eventually show long term improvements. I recommend everyone do their research on how acupuncture may help them, and I recommend giving it a shot if it looks right for you!

Image Credits: Feature, 1, 2