Most patients who seek out acupuncture are looking for relief from some sort of condition-be it a bad back, shoulder tendinitis, insomnia or one of a thousand other common concerns. But one of the biggest questions that patients want to know, no matter their condition, is this. How long will it take to find relief?
Not surprisingly, there's no exact answer, and recovery periods vary from one person to the next. We look to three Zeel acupuncture experts for in-depth answers to this confounding question.
Sandy Root, New York, NY
The time of pain relief from acupuncture depends partly on whether the pain is acute or chronic. A chronic problem could take more treatments, but it's also not infrequent that patients do have some pain relief after their first treatment. Each treatment has a cumulative effect, so as treatments continue, relief should get better and better.
Wanyun Zhong, Atlanta, GA
Unlike Western medicine, Eastern alternative medicine is not a "quick fix." The pain relief may range from a few days after the treatment to only a couple of minutes. The point of acupuncture is to balance the entire body over time so that the actual root cause of the pain will be cured, causing the pain to cease in the future. Acupuncture is not a pain pill which simply blocks the information from the brain. The treatment is cumulative. We usually suggest starting with a course of 10 treatments to see how the body responds and go from there.
Bruce Mandelbaum, New York, NY
It depends on the problem you have. A simple back problem may take one or two treatments, while a bad case of sciatica or high blood pressure may take longer. Long-term problems sometimes take longer than those that have just sprung up a day or two before treatment. The practitioner, after a thorough examination, will be able to tell you, based on his experience, how long your particular problem should take to resolve. It's different for everyone, though acupuncture will often resolve conditions a patient has been told they need to "live with" more quickly than whatever modality they have been using that didn't work for the patient.