Tuesday, October 21, 2014

How many treatments do I need? How often should I come in?

As acupuncturists, we hear these questions frequently.  The truth of the matter is "it depends".  There are so many factors and variables that this question is almost impossible to answer with certainty.  A general rule of thumb is it takes about 4-6 treatments to see a TRAJECTORY of improvement. 

In studies that come out of China, patients are typically going 5 times a week for two weeks and then are reevaluated.  That's 10 treatments in two weeks! That model doesn't work here in the United States for most patients as the cost and time required can be prohibitive. I tell my patients that acupuncture is like going to the gym to lose weight.  If don't need to lose much, you might go only once a month  (maintenance), but if you need to lose more you might want to go a few times a week (curative).

The following table is a general guide you can use for your situation.

Impact            Tx/week.          Reevaluate
10                        5                     1 week
8-9                       4                     1 week
6-7                       3                     2 weeks
3-5                       2                     2 weeks
1-2                       1                     2 weeks

Impact = how much the symptoms are affecting your life   -or- 
Impact = a measurement of pain

Other factors that contribute to longer or shorter treatment courses are perpetuating factors. These include patterns that produce or contribute to the imbalance and patient involvement. Is the condition is chronic or acute? The length of time you've been suffering with a condition plays a big roll. For every year you've had a problem, that's the number of months of treatment you will need before it gets resolved.

All of these variables influence the frequency and duration of treatments.  Because acupuncture treats the root cause of imbalance results can be subtle or slower than our fast paced lives expect, but the effects are typically longer lasting once the imbalance is corrected!


Left Hand Community Acupuncture is located in the heart of Old Town Lafayette 
at the corner of Simpson St. and Michigan Ave. LHCA offers an affordable sliding 
scale of $25-$55. We do not ask for proof of income. You decide what you feel is 
fair to you and fair to us. We treat patients in a relaxed, group setting that promotes 
an atmosphere of healing. Caroline Adams is a Licensed 
Acupuncturist and nationally board certified. Acupuncture can help with a wide range of health 
issues including pain, stress, insomnia, arthritis, allergies, depression, headaches, 
fatigue, cold and flu, digestive issues, PMS, infertility and many other health concerns.


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