During your first office visit, the practitioner may ask you at length about your health condition, lifestyle, and behaviour. The practitioner will want to obtain a complete picture of your treatment needs and behaviours that may contribute to your condition. Inform the acupuncturist about all treatments or medications you are taking and all medical conditions you have. The practitioner will also use standard traditional Chinese medical diagnostic techniques such as taking the pulses and checking the tongue.
Depending on the problem being treated and your prior condition, you may experience a wide range of sensations the first time you have acupuncture. Since the treatment goal is the restoration and balance of the body’s Qi, some patients will experience a burst of energy while others may feel relaxed or even tired. Many people experience a sense of calm and well being. Occasionally a patient may feel euphoric or light headed, especially after the first treatment.
Small, localized bruises from minor bleeding under the skin are infrequent, but do happen. These are no cause for alarm, and despite the cosmetic inconvenience, they actually provide a kind of bonus treatment. The re-absorption of the blood continues the stimulation of the acupuncture point even without the presence of the needle.
The practitioner will insert the needles and then leave you to rest for a period of time, often 20-30 minutes, depending on what is being treated. In every case, the practitioner will return to both re-stimulate the needles and to remove the needles and safely dispose of them. All you have to do is relax!