Questions

Is it safe?

In China, acupuncture needles were once made of gold and silver. In our office, we use flexible, presterilized, stainless steel, single-use, disposable needles. The needles are much thinner than the needles you might get a vaccine with, and are usually not inserted very deeply. Most patients report a sense of immediate relaxation and well-being one the needles are inserted.  We even have patients as young as just a few years old who tolerate the treatment very well & look forward to coming in for follow up visits.  We also offer techniques such as red laser, point stimulater, auriculotherapy with press balls, moxa, and essential oils treatments which can be done without the use of needles.Back to top

Who should perform acupuncture?

Acupuncture should only be performed by a licensed, certified practitioner. Education requirements in the state of Massachusetts, includes completing a three year accredited program (over 3000 hours), involving extensive clinical training, as well as studies in Western Medicine. To be certified, applicants must pass a rigorous, national three day board examination with a practicum on clean needle technique. The letters L.Ac. after a practitioner’s name stands for Licensed Acupuncturist and indicates the attainment of, at least, a minimum standard or training, as well as approval by a state or national licensing board. The letters M.Ac. stands for Master of Acupuncture. In the state of Massachusetts, practitioners are licensed by the Board of Registration in Medicine and required to maintain a standard of continuing education. The MAOM (Master’s of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) is a combination of acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Herbal medicine training.

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How Does it Work?

The beauty of Chinese Medicine is that treatment is focused on healing the individual rather than eliminating a particular symptom. Acupuncture taps into the body’s innate wisdom, its ability to heal itself, by restoring the flow of energy through the organs and meridians.  It also has the ability to regulate the nervous system and stimulate the parasympathetic side of the nervous system, the side from which all of our regulatory functions are supported, i.e., heart rate, digestion, respirations, etc.

Each individual is viewed in their entirety and diagnosed based upon their unique systemic pattern. Few medical systems look at the function of the body as one related whole in the way that Chinese Medicine does. Based on this pattern we take measures to readjust the body to restore and optimize your health. A combination of acupuncture, moxabustion and possibly herbal medicine will be discussed with you, along with dietary recommendations and changes in sleep, exercise and work habits, if appropriate.

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Will it hurt?

We all have negative associations with needles, but usually are thinking of the needles used in western medicine which are hollow in order to inject into or remove a fluid from the body. Acupuncture needles are solid, and therefore are significantly thinner, often about the thickness of a single hair. They are inserted quickly through the skin through the use of an insertion tube, and are left in place for roughly 15-30 minutes. Most people feel only a slight sensation at the insertion (a pinch) if anything at all.

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What does it Help?

While Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine are both excellent choices for preventative care, they also have been proven by the World Health Organization to provide effective treatment for many existing conditions including, but not limited to:

Muscular and Arthritic Pain

Back and neck pain, bursitis, headaches, sprains, arthritis, overuse injuries, tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, pre-and post operative pain.

Respiratory Ailments

Colds and flu, coughs, asthma bronchitis, sinus infections allergies, earaches.

Mental and Emotional Issues

Anxiety, stress, depression, insomnia, heart palpitations, panic and sleep disorders.

Reproductive Concerns

Impotence, prostate diseases, infertility, PMS, PID, Vaginitis, irregular/painful menstruation, menopausal syndrome, endometriosis, ovarian cysts, a variety of prenatal symptoms including morning sickness, difficult labor, and labor induction.

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Specialities at Root & Branch

At Root & Branch we treat all of the above conditions but have developed specialities in the following areas:

  • Chronic and Acute Pain
  • Injuries
  • Infertility
  • Gynecology
  • Liver problems-hepatitis, mono
  • Digestive Disorders
  • Prenatal Acupuncture
  • Autoimmune and Immune Support
  • Cancer Support
  • Menopausal Syndrome

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How long will it take?

Every individual is unique, and will respond to treatment at a different pace. Thus, we generally suggest that people commit to a course of 4-6 treatments, after which a more accurate time frame can be offered. As a general rule, conditions that are chronic may take longer to resolve, and acute conditions usually respond more quickly.

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Why should I seek acupuncture treatment?

Acupuncture is greatly indicated when there are conditions that are unable to be diagnosed through western medical means.  Stress induced conditions are also very appropriately treated with Chinese medicine.  It is also extremely helpful as an adjunctive therapy to many more invasive western medical treatments, i.e., post surgical pain and inflammation, cancer therapy, immune therapy, etc.

Acupuncture can be used both as a means of preventing illness as part of a wellness program, and as a means of treatment for illnesses and injuries. It is helpful and effective for a variety of ailments including pain, (arthritis, inflammation, injuries, pre- and postoperative pain, etc.) stress and anxiety disorders, GYN, fertility, sleep disturbances, liver disorders (hepatitis B, C, mono with liver inflammation), digestive problems, emotional lability (irritability, anger, frustration, startling easily, fears, anxiety, panic), urinary problems, genital problems, supportive treatment for chemotherapy and radiation, and many others.

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