The acupuncture points used in treatments are located all over the body so loose-fitting clothing is most suitable that will allow easy access to the lower arms and legs, hands and feet, abdomen, lower and upper back. Occasionally a medical gown may be required to allow full access to the spine.
The initial consultation is designed for me to learn more about you and your health history and your presenting symptoms. Communication is vital to establishing a positive working relationship. I know from experience that you will make better progress if you are open and honest about your health.
I won’t tell you I can help if I don’t think I can.
I pride myself on my honesty and integrity and will advise you if your condition may respond better to a different therapy based on what your expectations of having treatment are.
Initial Consultation Examination and First Treatment
As part of your consultation, I will perform a traditional diagnosis. This includes an examination of your pulse and tongue and a palpation of your abdomen, feet, legs, and arms. If you are in pain, please don’t worry, I will not put you through any palpation that will make you uncomfortable. All my diagnostic assessment takes place on a treatment table so that you can lie you down and relax.
The first treatment is always minimal as everyone responds differently to acupuncture and the one thing I don’t want to do is too much too soon. Less is definitely more in this situation. What is important is noticing any changes and usually I see that before you do. I encourage communication so I will be asking you for feedback on aspects of your treatment such as any sensations you may be experiencing.
There are many different techniques used in acupuncture, and some are more suitable for certain conditions than others. The majority are painless, but some do require a level of manipulation that may cause temporary discomfort. I will choose the most suitable technique wherever possible to ensure your comfort and safety. This may be Acupuncture, Okyu, Tui Na, Cupping or Chinese herbal formula.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I pay?
I accept payment of cash, cheque or bank transfer with payment required at the end of the treatment.
If you have private or business medical insurance, you may be able to claim back the cost of your treatment from your provider (many patients do!). Please check with your provider before committing to any treatment.
Do I need to prepare in any way for the treatment?
It’s important to make sure you’ve eaten on the day of your treatment but try to leave at least an hour of going without food before your treatment. It’s best not to drink alcohol, coffee, or any caffeine drinks before or after your treatment. Ideally wear loose fitting clothing that will allow easy access to the body, especially the abdomen, neck, back, feet and the legs and arms below the knees and elbows. Please only wear a minimal amount of jewellery as all wrist and neck jewellery including wristwatches will need to be removed.
What sort of needles do you use?
I only practice clean needle technique and only use the highest quality surgical steel sterile, single use acupuncture needles for all inserted needle techniques. Once a needle has been used it is immediately disposed of in a sharps box.
Is it painful?
Japanese acupuncture is a very gentle style of acupuncture. It uses many non-invasive techniques and when we do insert a needle, we use the thinnest needles and usually only just into the skin. The majority of patients do not realise the needle is there. Japanese acupuncture invented the guide tube over 400 years ago to make the needling experience as pain free as possible when compared to Chinese acupuncture who use thicker needles and much more needle stimulation.
Unfortunately, sometimes a strong sensation is felt but it should never be painful, more of a dull ache that passes as the Qi flows.
Is acupuncture safe?
Acupuncture is one of the safest therapies in the world when applied by a professionally trained and experienced practitioner. Its why we train for over three years with many practical assessments and exams before we can get licensed to practice. Failure at any stage of training means retaking that year including all the exams and assessments. This strict regime is why acupuncture is so safe and why in the UK we only require voluntary regulation as a profession.
With any intervention that pierces the skin there is always a risk which is why I only practice clean needle techniques and ensure every treatment is as risk free as is physically possible under both local authority and governing body regulations.
How will I feel after my treatment?
Treatment is designed to stimulate the body’s own healing mechanism and to get all the internal organs working together in harmony. This can have a very therapeutic effect with patients feeling very relaxed and rejuvenated after treatment.
It may also at times instigate what is commonly called a ‘ healing crisis’ as the body’s immune system tries to naturally heal itself. This is a normal bodily response to treatment, especially for long term conditions and doesn’t last for very long. It is always advisable to drink plenty of fluid after treatment and to have a more relaxed day so that full benefit of the treatment can be achieved.
Toyohari Meridian Therapy is unique to Japan and is part of the oldest system of acupuncture still in daily use.