There are six things you can do to prepare for acupuncture treatment that will help you get the most out of your session.
Fill out an initial intake form
Or at the very least read over it. We often have lengthy and complicated health history. By at least visiting the questions presented within an intake form, it will jog the memory.
You will start to think about where your health is. What parts of your health currently concern you the most? How well is your body operating today? What major events have influenced your health eg injuries, major illness and surgeries?
We often forget many of these as they fall into the past.
Eat a few hours before treatment
Have a light meal an hour or two before your treatment.
Acupuncture works to move energy, fluids and blood around the body. Having nutrition and energy for your body provides something to work with. It provides your body with the resources it needs to heal.
Wear loose comfortable clothing
Very often the majority of acupuncture is in areas accessible without removing clothes. Plus of course, you will want to be comfortable on the table.
A principle of post-treatment self-care is to keep your body protected from the influences of the weather. Dress appropriately in the cooler months of the year. Wear a scarf to warm and protect your neck.
Aim to arrive 15 minutes before your appointment
This offers you the opportunity to settle and arrive. It allows you time to find the clinic and a park. It provides space to use the bathroom or have a drink of water before treatment.
It also allows for some of the unpredictable events that may occur. Traffic or roadworks may obstruct your planned route, childcare may be late, parking may be hard to find.
A buffer means you can arrive without stress.
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Avoid strenuous activity
It is best to allow your body space to integrate the treatment. This means try to avoid scheduling big activities following your acupuncture appointment. Pilates, gym, netball or whatever your preferred activity is are best left for another day.
Keep it simple
Do not schedule other therapeutic appointments on the same day. Seeing your massage therapist, acupuncturist and osteopath all in one day is too much for the body. Your body will be unable to receive the best and clearest message from each of the interventions.
Ideally, plan a rest day between treatments of different modalities. At the very least try and keep them on separate days.
Enjoy your acupuncture session!
Don’t forget to turn your phone off so you can be fully present for this time you have set aside for your body.
If you have any questions then write them down to ask your acupuncturist. Of course, if you need an answer sooner then reach out and ask!
What else would you like to know?
Thanks for reading this far. Have I missed your question? Was something unclear? Let me know in the comments below!
Acupuncturist. Herbalist. Educator.
Jason is the owner of and principal practitioner at Dantian Health. A nationally registered Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist, he is also an educator in Oriental Medicine at the Australian Shiatsu College.
Jason’s qualifications include a Bachelors degree in Health Science (Chinese Medicine) and Diploma in Chinese Remedial Massage (AnMo TuiNa) from Southern School of Natural Therapies, Diploma in Shiatsu and Oriental Therapies from Australian Shiatsu College and a Diplomate in Canonical Chinese Medicine from Institute of Classics in East Asian Medicine.