FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Does Acupuncture Hurt?
No, acupuncture is not painful. The acupuncturist inserts extremely thin, stainless steel needles (the width of a human hair) into a patient’s skin at specific points in the body (called meridians). A trained acupuncturist knows which meridians to insert the acupuncture needles into, how deeply to insert them, and how to stimulate them by raising or twisting them to balance the qi correctly.
Some people notice a warm, tingling or pressure like sensation at the site and along the meridian pathways. It is common for people to fall asleep during treatment due to the relaxation response that occurs once the needles are inserted. We also offer non-needle treatments using cold laser, magnets and acupressure therapy.
Is Acupuncture Safe?
When performed by a competent, licensed practitioner, acupuncture is one of the safest forms of healthcare. There are no negative side effects and we only use disposable, sterilized, one time use needles. We have the lowest malpractice rate amongst healthcare practitioners due to our high safety standards and the low risk inherent in Acupuncture treatment.Acupuncture has many benefits. Since it is extremely safe and has no side effects, it can be an excellent alternative to pain medications for those patients who cannot or choose not to take them.
What forms of payment are accepted?
Cash, check, VISA and Mastercard and some insurances are all accepted.
Does insurance cover acupuncture?
Acupuncture is now covered by the majority of health care insurance plans in the United States. We recommend that you call your benefits department and ask if Acupuncture is a covered benefit. Be sure to familiarize your self with the benefit guidelines as you will be responsible for payment if your insurance does not cover any portion of the treatment fee.Some plans only cover for certain diagnosis, limit the amount of visits per year, require you to reach your deductible, require a copay and may not reimburse for the full fee. Some HMO's will contract with Acupuncturist who agree to discount fees for their members. Also, treatment costs are an eligible expense for Health Reimbursement Accounts.
CeltiCare Health Plan of Massachusetts, Inc. will be covering Acupuncture as of Jan.2014.
We look forward to working with Celticare to provide the best in Acupuncture Services.
How many treatments will I need?
This will vary greatly among individuals.Typically, we start with a plan of 12 treatments for chronic conditions. Acute condition may respond quicker depending on the nature of the problem. If you have been living with a chronic condition and want long lasting results you must give Acupuncture the time to work. Consecutive treatments work best because Acupuncture has a cumulative effect. Some people will notice an immediate improvement while others will need several treatments before they notice any results. We carefully evaluate you at each session and will know early on if you are responding to the treatment plan. If we find that you are not responding, we will reevaluate your case. In some instances, it is necessary to make life-style changes and as life-style counselors we can assist you in making necessary changes to reach your health care goals.
No, acupuncture should not hurt. A momentary prick is often felt around the needle as it is inserted, eventually creating a dull pressure or tingling around the area during the treatment. Most people are amazed by how relaxed they feel during and after the treatment. This can only occur if the treatment is comfortable and gentle.
Does the clinic offer Chinese herbs? If so, what kind?
Yes, we have an extensive Chinese herbal pharmacy that consists primarily of patent herbal formulas that comes as granulated capsules or tablets. The clinic also offers customized herbal powdered blends.
What sets our clinic apart from other Chinese medical practitioners?
- Kathy has been practicing Acupuncture for over 25 years. She has treated thousands of people in the Central Mass.Community.
- Kathy was the staff acupuncturists at Fallon Community Health, Greatbrook Valley Health Care, St.Vincents Detox.Program,Holy Cross and WPI Student/Employee Health Departments.
- We have expanded and are now located in two convenient locations in Worcester and Leominster.
- We are an Integrative Healthcare Center, The Family Wellness Center, Jennifer Weyler, M.D. at our Worcester office and Erika Ehnstrom-Carr RN,LicAc.at our Leominster office.
- We offer Chinese Herbal medicine. All of our herbs are GMP certified, safe and effective.
- We offer Allergy Elimination.
- We offer massage therapy.
- A comprehensive diagnosis is clearly communicated to you.
- We love what we do and are devoted to top quality patient care.
- We take our time with you: 1.5 hours in the first visit and 60 minute follow-ups.
- We educate you about what’s wrong, why and how it can be healed according to Chinese medical principles.
- When you get acupuncture treatments, at no extra charge, we give nutritional counseling, herbal consulting, cupping, moxibustion, and auricular therapy.
- Your treatment is personally tailored to your needs. At Acupuncture Associates, your treatment specifically reflects your unique individual dynamics.
- Evening appointments are available
- We accept insurances that cover Acupuncture including PIP-auto and workers comp.
What is Integrative Medicine?
Traditional Medicine in the U.S. assumes that if a cell isn't functioning correctly, one must find a pharmaceutical to correct the function. If that doesn't work, one must remove the offending organ surgically.
Integrative Medicine recognizes that other cultures have been successfully using other theories of how we get sick and how we get well for thousands of years. The World Health Organization ranks medical outcomes in the U.S. as 38th in the world---on a par with some third world countries. Thus it is obvious that these other systems have something to offer and should not be ignored.
Integrative Medicine is the use and integration of all theories and forms of medical care, attempting to utilize the best of each for a better outcome. Only since the early 1990's have U.S. medical schools started teaching therapies like acupuncture, homeopathy, etc. that have been used successfully in the rest of the world for hundreds or thousands of years.
What is qi?
The only word that best describes qi in the English language is energy.In the ancient book Nan Ching qi is described as a” vapor “or “finest matter influences” that underlie all physiological and pathological change. Qi is the vital energy that flows through all living things. It provides nourishment to every cell,tissue,organ and gland.
What are meridians?
Robert Becker mapped the channels electrically.
He showed that there are electrophysiological loci on the skin and within the muscle layers that correspond exactly to the points on acupuncture charts. He concluded that the meridians are an alternate regulatory system in the body that has to do with electro magnetic currents and electromagnetic organization of tissue growth and repair, and that this has a lot to do with how the body heals when there is an injury.
So now we talk about a current of injury.
When tissue is traumatized, there is actually a depolarization that occurs. In the process of restoring the electromagnetic field and current to normal, the tissue heals. And it appears that you can manipulate this electrically, as well as with acupuncture needles.
Clearly there is an aspect of our functioning that is intangible, but still demonstrable. We now have the technology to identify these very subtle fields and currents.