5 Frequently Asked Questions About Acupuncture

Photo credit to Pixbay

Photo credit to Pixbay

This week’s blog we will cover 5 of the most frequently asked questions about acupuncture. We hope this will be a nice article for people to learn about acupuncture and also educate people who may be interested.

How old is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is one of the longest medical traditions alive in the world today.  Some scholars claim the tradition is 5,000 years old (Neolithic Era), more conservative estimates have put it to being 2,500 years old (Bronze Age). As more archeological evidence is discovered perhaps one day we will have a more clear picture on the subject. In any case, acupuncture has been with us for centuries.

How safe is acupuncture?

Acupuncture when performed by a licensed practitioner using clean needle techniques is generally a safe procedure.

What are the needles like?

All acupuncture needles are sterile, stainless steel, single use (disposable) needles. Acupuncture needles are as thin as a human hair and they glide into the skin.  Acupuncture needles are filiform, meaning they are solid, and are not designed to rip and tear flesh like syringe needles are made to.

Is acupuncture painful ?

Generally, I would say that a majority of my patients do not feel pain or discomfort with my needling style. At times, when dealing with painful conditions, there may be a sense of minimal discomfort but it is a very brief and temporary feeling.

How might acupuncture work?

According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM): “In the TCM system of medicine, the body is seen as a delicate balance of two opposing and inseparable forces: yin and yang. Yin represents the cold, slow, or passive principle, yang represents the hot, excited, or active principle. Among the major assumptions in TCM are that health is achieved by maintaining the body in a “balanced state” and that disease is due to an internal imbalance of yin and yang. This imbalance leads to blockage in the flow of qi (vital energy) along pathways known as meridians. It is believed that there are 12 main meridians and 8 secondary meridians and that there are more than 2,000 acupuncture points on the human body that connect with them.

Preclinical studies have documented acupuncture’s effects, but they have not been able to fully explain how acupuncture works within the framework of the Western system of medicine that is commonly practiced in the United States. It is proposed that acupuncture produces its effects through regulating the nervous system, thus aiding the activity of pain-killing biochemicals such as endorphins and immune system cells at specific sites in the body. In addition, studies have shown that acupuncture may alter brain chemistry by changing the release of neurotransmitters and neurohormones and, thus, affecting the parts of the central nervous system related to sensation and involuntary body functions, such as immune reactions and processes that regulate a person’s blood pressure, blood flow, and body temperature.”

Thank you for reading our blog. If you have a condition and would like to know if acupuncture can help, feel free to call us 415.445.9388  or email us info@sfacugroup.com and schedule a free 15 minute consultation.


  1. http://healing.about.com/od/acupuncture/ss/whatisacpunctre_5.htm
  2. http://ezinearticles.com/?How-Old-is-Acupuncture?-Challenging-the-Neolithic-Origins-Theory&id=3067317
  3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12564354
  4. http://www.bastyrcenter.org/content/view/112/



One thought on “5 Frequently Asked Questions About Acupuncture

  1. Great questions! I get asked these when I refer out to acupuncture, now I have a reference for my clients to go to! Thanks Mario.

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