Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine are integrative medical modalities that consider everything within the human body as interconnected; no single part can be separated from the whole. Therefore, acupuncture achieves balance in the body by simultaneously addressing a person’s physical, emotional, and mental health. EAST Integrative Medicine carries forth the core tenets of this holistic ideology with every treatment by providing each patient with the individual attention necessary to enable and promote their well-being.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture involves the insertion of thin, disposable, sterile needles into specific parts of the body to alleviate pain and treat certain health conditions. It is widely accepted as an effective, non-invasive, treatment for a variety of conditions.
WHAT DOES ACUPUNCTURE TREAT?
Acupuncture is most often used to treat pain. While it is extremely effective at providing pain relief, acupuncture is also a successful way to treat other physical and emotional ailments. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the following symptoms, conditions, and diseases havebeen shown in controlled trials to treated effectively by acupuncture: 
- Chronic and Acute Pain - Low back pain, neck pain, sciatica, tennis elbow, knee pain, shoulder pain, sprains, arthritis, facial pain (including craniomandibular disorders), headache, dental pain, tempromandibular (TMJ) dysfunction, rheumatoid arthritis, postoperative pain
- Circulatory Disorders – Stroke, essential hypertension, primary hypotension
- Respiratory Disorders- Allergic rhinitis (including hayfever), sore throat, cough, asthma, sinusitis, chronic colds/flu, bronchitis, respiratory tract infection
- Gynecological Disorders- Primary dysmenorrhea, irregular, heavy or painful menstruation, PMS, vaginitis, infertility, morning sickness, induction of labor, malposition of fetus, menopausal symptoms
- Decreased Immunity – Adverse reactions to radiation or chemotherapy, leucopenia
- Digestive Disorders- Acute epigastralgia, peptic ulcer, acute and chronic gastritis, diarrhea, constipation
- Emotional Disorders- Depression, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), panic disorder, general anxiety disorder, stress, insomnia.
Can acupuncture help me even if i feel healthy?
Yes. Many patients seek regular acupuncture treatments to stay in peak condition so they can fully enjoy life. Acupuncture is a preventative measure to keep patients healthy throughout the year. Acupuncturists see subtle signs of disease processes at work before symptoms begin to interfere with daily life. Acupuncture effectively addresses these issues, preventing future problems from occurring. Because acupuncture treatments are so deeply relaxing, many patients find regular, maintenance treatments beneficial for stress relief.
How does acupuncture work?
Acupuncture stimulates the body’s ability to resist or overcome illnesses and conditions by correcting imbalances and decreasing or eliminating painful sensations. Acupuncture influences a number of physiological functions such as release of endorphins by the brain, restoration of proper circulation in diseased areas, stimulation of hormonal glands, and regulation of immune system functions . Acupuncture points are supplied by high concentrations of nerve endings and bundles, mast cells (used for immune function), lymphatics, and capillaries . The acupuncture points have various functions, like stopping pain, stimulating immune function, or resolving phlegm (for coughs or runny noses). Using a system of pulse and tongue diagnosis, coupled with findings obtained by inquiring about related symptoms and physical exam, an Acupuncturist determines the pathology affecting the internal organs, muscles, skin and joints. A treatment protocol is then developed and needles are placed accordingly in order to resolve the patient's condition.
Does it hurt?
Generally, acupuncture does not hurt. Some patients feel the needles as they are inserted, others feel nothing. Acupuncture needles are solid, about the diameter of a human hair, and much thinner than hypodermic needles used at a doctor’s office. Patients often have sensations during the treatment that range from warmth or tingling to a brief ache or heaviness in the area being needled. These sensations are generally only felt on one or two of the acupuncture points and it indicates favorable results from the treatment. Most patients describe the experience as deeply relaxing and often fall asleep during treatment.
How many treatments will I need?
On average, patients come weekly for eight to ten visits, and then begin decreasing the frequency of visits as symptoms become more intermittent and later disappear. Once the condition has resolved, many patients choose to continue treatment for maintenance and preventative care. These maintenance visits can be monthly or quarterly, or semi-annually, depending on the patient's goal.
Are the needles safe?
Yes. Acupuncture needles are pre-packaged, pre-sterilized, and disposable. Each needle is used once, then promptly disposed of in a medical sharps container and send to a medical waste facility for proper disposal according to State and Federal regulations.
Are there any side effects?
In 2001, the British Medical Journal published the results of two large-scale studies showing that the benefits of acupuncture far outweigh side effects of treatment. Post-treatment complaints were infrequent, minor, and short-lived, with no serious adverse events noted. The journal concluded that complications from acupuncture are "remarkably rare and transient" [ranging from 0.1% to 0.7%] especially when compared with the rate of adverse drug reactions or prescribing errors in primary care medicine, estimated at 0.5% to 6%.
Who should not have acupuncture?
Some patients are not candidates for acupuncture treatments, including those with acute irregular heartbeat, or heart failure, bleeding disorders, liver failure, kidney failure, unstable diabetes, and persons who are taking anticoagulants within two weeks.
 World Health Organization. (2003). Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials. Geneva World Health Organization.
 Kendall, D.E. (1989). Parts I and II: A scientific model of acupuncture, Am J Acupuncture 17(3):251-268, 343-360.
 MacPherson, H., Thomas, K., Walters, S., Fitter, M. (2001). The York acupuncture safety study: Prospective survey of 34000 treatments by traditional acupuncturists. BMJ: British Medical Journal, (323)7311:486-487.