Be Well Blog
Acupuncture from a Patient’s Perspective
My first time receiving an acupuncture treatment was quite remarkable. My digestion was terrible and I suspected I had IBS. I was leaving the next day on an airplane from Australia to North America and was becoming desperate. Anyone who has done that trip knows that it’s a 24-hour flight you do not want digestion troubles on. Plus, I usually can’t resist those little white dinner rolls wrapped in plastic that I would never eat in any other context. They inevitably give me more trouble than it’s worth, but I was vegan at the time, so my plane-food choices were pretty limited. The idea of a little bread roll was actually quite exhilarating.
The first time I tried acupuncture I went to a community acupuncture clinic where I was treated in the same large room as other people. We sometimes have community-style treatment events at Evolve Health + Wellness, but generally, treatments are conducted in allocated private rooms. For my first time receiving acupuncture, there was a gigantic, athletic man next to me who was experiencing pain in his knee. He was quite vocal as the acupuncturist inserted needles into his leg. He made acupuncture sound painful. I thought, if that burly guy can’t handle it, how will I?
After a lengthy discussion of my health history, dietary and lifestyle habits, I lay down on the treatment table. I was quite nervous. However, as the acupuncturist inserted needles in different parts of my body – forehead, stomach, arms, hands, legs and ankles – I felt variations of stimulation, gentle shoots of energy in my body, and waves of relaxation. It felt so good.
As I lay there for about twenty minutes with the needles in me, I felt gurgling in my stomach. I knew that something was working. And then a popping started in my right ear. An incessant, strange, but not unsettling, popping. Things were moving and clearing in my body – what I have come to learn is acupuncture’s stimulation of qi. This ancient, extraordinary form of healing made immediate sense to me through the experience of it.
I have not seen grown men flinching in pain at Evolve Health + Wellness, perhaps because we are not always a community acupuncture clinic. Whether or not that happens behind closed doors, I’m not sure. What I do know is that the feelings of stimulation, energy flow and relaxation are paramount effects of my treatments here. I see these effects in patients, too, in my role at front desk. Since receiving regular acupuncture treatments at Evolve, my digestion has never been better. I’m looking forward to my next flight to Australia so I can eat as many bread rolls as I want.