practitioner (acupuncturist): Erica Yonge
The principle aim of Acupuncture in treating the whole person
is to recover the equilibrium between our physical, emotional
and spiritual aspects. Practiced in the Far East for thousands
of years, Acupuncture focuses on stimulating the body's own
energy through channels. This stimulates a healing response
and restores balance. It can be used to treat virtually any
condition, acute or chronic.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is acupuncture? Acupuncture is a system
of healing that has been practiced in China and other eastern
countries for thousands for years. Although described as a
means of pain relief, it is on fact used to treat people with
a wide range of illnesses. Its focus is on improving the overall
well being of the patient, rather than the isolated treatment
of specific symptoms.
What does acupuncture feel like? Most people's
experience of acupuncture needles is of those used in injections
and blood tests. Acupuncture needles bear little resemblance
to these. They are much finer and are solid rather than hollow.
When the acupuncture needles are inserted, the sensation is
often described as a tingling or dull ache.
Needles are inserted for a second or two or for upto 20 minutes,
depending on the effect required. During treatment, patients
commonly experience a heaviness in the limbs or a pleasant
feeling of relaxation.
The benefits of acupuncture frequently include more than just
the relief from a particular condition Many people find that
it can also lead to increased energy levels, better appetite
and sleep as well as an enhanced sense of overall well being.
Who has acupuncture? Many people come to acupuncture
for help with specific symptoms and conditions. These might
include anxiety states, arthritis, asthma, back pain, circulatory
problems, depression, facial paralysis, fibrosis, high blood
pressure, indeterminate aches and pains, infertility, menstrual
problems, migraines, rheumatism, sciatica, skin conditions
Acupuncture is a safe treatment for all. It has proved to
be effective in pregnancy management and for the relief of
pain during childbirth. Acupuncture is also helpful for people
trying to overcome addictions such as those related to smoking,
alcohol, food or drugs.
Some people may have acupuncture as a preventive measure to
strengthen their constitution, or because they feel unwell
in themselves without being "ill" in the western
sense. It can also be used alongside conventional medicine
in the treatment of both acute and chronic disease. As with
any therapy, the response to acupuncture can vary from one
person to another.
What will happen on my first acupuncture visit?
Your first consultation with the acupuncturist may be longer
than subsequent sessions. The acupuncturist needs to assess
your general state of health, in order to identify the underlying
pattern of disharmony and give you the most effective treatment.
You will be asked about your current symptoms and what treatment
you have received so far, your medical history, and that of
your close family, your diet, digestive system, sleeping patterns,
and emotional state. To discover how the energies are flowing
in your body , the acupuncturist is likely to feel your pulses
on both wrists, noting their quality, rhythm and strength.
The structure, colour and coating of your tongue also gives
a good guide to your physical health.
Once enough information has been gathered to determine the
likely cause of your problems,the acupuncturist can select
the most appropriate treatment. The aim is to discover which
energy channels need adjusting for your specific complaint
to improve, and which require treatment to boost your overall
energy and vitality.
There are around 500 recognized acupuncture points on the
body, of which about 100 are most commonly used. Stimulation
of specific areas on the skin affects the functioning of certain
organs in the body. However, those areas may not be close
to the part of the body where the problem is experienced.
For example, although you suffer from headaches, needles may
be inserted in the foot or hand.
The acupuncturist may supplement the needle treatment with
MOXA, a smoldering her that is used to warm acupuncture point
to encourage the the body's energy to flow smoothly. Other
methods of stimulating acupuncture points including using
lasers or electro-acupncture. Massage or tapping with a rounded
probe are particularly suitable for small children or for
people with a fear of needles.
How often will I need acupuncture treatment?
In traditional acupuncture philosophy, each person is considered
unique, and therefore the number of treatments required depends
on the individual. Some change is usually felt after 5 treatments.
Normally you are required to visit your acupuncturist once
or twice a week at first, although some conditions may require
less frequent attention.
Sometimes the effects of the treatment are dramatic, and only
one or two treatments are required. With other patients, the
effects are more subtle and may need treatment over several
Should my doctor know I am receiving acupuncture
treatment? If you are receiving treatment from your doctor
then it makes sense to tell him or her about your plans to
have acupuncture. The acupuncture treatment may enable you
to reduce or even stop taking some forms of medication, but
your doctor should be consulted regarding any change of prescription.
You should always inform your acupuncturist about any medication
you are taking as this may affect your response to the acupuncture
Is acupuncture safe? All members of the British
Acupuncture Council (BAcC) must observe a code of practice
which lays down stringent standards of hygiene and sterilization
for needles and other equipment, These procedures have been
approved by the Department of Health and provide protection
against the transmission of infectious diseases.
Patients who have been treated by a BAcC member are eligible
to donate blood through the National Blood Service.