Many people do not realize in Canada and the United States, naturopathic doctors are trained in acupuncture. Dr. JJ Duguoa, is a naturopathic doctor and addresses many questions first-timers have regarding acupuncture.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is when you take very thin needles, and put them into points on the body to stimulate the Qi. According to Chinese Medicine, Qi is energy, health, nutrients and you want to stimulate the Qi in the body to cure disease.
Who can practice acupuncture?
Naturopathic Doctors, Doctors of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Acupuncturists, some Chiropractors, some Physio-Therapists and some Medical Doctors.
What education is required to practice acupuncture?
Depending on the state, province or country, the regulations vary. Generally, practitioners have to fulfill a specified number of clinical hours, they need to know what points to do, what points not to do, and you need to know the safe needling techniques.
Do Acupuncturists have a special designation?
Depending on the type of license the practitioner has, they could be a LAC - Licensed Acupuncturist, or a Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Jennifer shared her experience with acupuncture. She has used acupuncture to treat sinus infections and neck, shoulder & back muscle tension. When the needle goes into a tense muscle, it hurts. It is tolerable, but it hurts. The part Jennifer likes the least is when the needles are twisted to stimulate the points. The results afterwards are worth it- it releases the tension.
Dr. JJ explains that the reason for twisting the needles is to get a Qi response. When patients come in for an acupuncture treatment for a pain condition like head aches, tight traps, back pain, etc., there is usually a pain release when the needles are inserted, but afterwards the patient feels a lot better. The muscles relax and the pain goes away.
Is acupuncture safe for everyone?
Certain acupuncture points should be avoided during pregnancy. Acupuncture is not recommended for children, because you need to stay still during treatments.