Dr. Sarah Poulin, DACM, L.Ac., Dipl.OM

Treatment FAQs

What will a typical treatment be like?

The first visit tends to be a little longer (about 1- 1 1/2 hours) so that I can get to know you and your health concerns better. On returning visits, which usually last about 1 hour, I check in with you to measure your progress and evaluate how the treatments are working. On each visit, acupuncture needles will be inserted. These needles are sterile and single-use and may be inserted in a variety of points all over the body. The needles are typically retained for about 20-25 minutes and then removed and disposed of. Other modalities such Tui Na (a form of Chinese massage), gua sha (a traditional technique used to relieve pain), or cupping therapy may be used. The use of traditional Chinese herbal medicine may also be discussed. 

Do the needles hurt?

This is a very common question about acupuncture. No one likes needles, and the thought of having many of them inserted all over can be intimidating. However, acupuncture needles are much thinner than the hypodermic needles many of us are familiar with from medical procedures. It is estimated that 18 acupuncture needles can be inserted into the tip of a hypodermic needle! Once a needle is inserted, some people may feel a minor sensation at the point, but acupuncture is rarely painful. Oftentimes, many people even fall asleep with the needles in!

How many treatments will I need?

The number of treatments varies from person to person and from condition to condition. Often, acute conditions tend to respond faster to treatment than chronic conditions do. I usually have patients come in once or twice a week for treatment, and often, some positive changes are seen within three to five treatments. Some people may respond faster, and it may take others a bit longer. However, most patients notice an improvement in their general health and well-being after beginning treatment.

What should I do before the treatment?

Please come to the treatment wearing loose and comfortable clothes. Please make sure you have eaten something within several hours of the treatment and are well hydrated. 

Does insurance cover acupuncture?

Please refer to the "Services & Rates" tab for more information on acupuncture and insurance.