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Acupuncture for Arthritis

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Does Acupuncture Hurt?

You may feel a slight prick when the needle is inserted, but it is much less than the prick you feel during an injection, since the needles are much thinner. You may feel a heaviness, numbness, tingling, or mild soreness after the needles have been inserted.

Is Acupuncture Safe?

Yes. When acupuncture is performed with disposable needles under clean, sterile conditions, and by a qualified practitioner, it is highly unusual to have any complications.

What Are the Advantages of Acupuncture?

One benefit to acupuncture is that it is a drug-free way to minimize pain. With drugs, people often develop a tolerance, or the need for an increased dosage to achieve the same required effect. However, this does not happen with acupuncture. In addition, acupuncture allows the doctor to immediately examine a person's response to the treatment and make adjustments if necessary.

Does the Medical Establishment Approve of Acupuncture?

Yes. There are approximately 6,500 licensed acupuncturists in the U.S. and 3,000 doctors who perform acupuncture as part of their medical practice. In addition, the World Health Organization currently recognizes more than 40 medical problems, ranging from allergies to AIDS, which can be helped by acupuncture treatment. Lastly, the FDA regulates acupuncture needles as medical devices.

Will My Health Insurance Policy Cover Acupuncture Treatment?

Some insurance companies will pay for acupuncture treatment. Because each insurance provider has different restrictions, it is best to consult with your provider to determine if your treatment will be covered.

How Often Should I Be Treated With Acupuncture?

The number of treatments required depends on each person's condition and response to acupuncture. One acupuncture session does not usually result in lasting pain relief. Usually, at least two sessions a week for four to five weeks is a normal course of treatment. It may take several treatments before you notice any benefit, so try at least five or 10 treatments before giving up.

Can I Resume My Daily Activities Following a Treatment?

It is best to bring someone with you on your first acupuncture treatment so that you will have transportation home. This is because acupuncture may have a very calming effect. You may feel overly relaxed after the treatment and shouldn't drive. No matter how good you feel after the treatment, it is important not to overextend yourself. You should take it easy for a few days after the treatment. In addition, it is important to continue taking your prescribed medications.

 

 

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WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on March 04, 2013
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