How to Prepare for an Acupuncture Appointment

Nowadays, many people have heard about the excellent healing benefits of acupuncture. They may have a friend whose migraine headaches were relieved by this ancient remedy, which employs small needles directed at energy channels or meridians. Their cousin may have had acupuncture with herbal cupping massage following a knee injury during a football game and seen their healing response improved. However, acupuncture is not yet mainstream, and although many insurance plans now cover this service provided by licensed acupuncturists, many people are unfamiliar with it. They don’t know how to use the service. The following are steps to take to make your first appointment and some suggestions to help you get the most out of your acupuncture experience. It is a journey that can improve your health and the health of your family for years to come.

Read Before You Go

Before you make an appointment, you should learn a little about acupuncture. A useful resource is the Internet, such as these blog posts: 


These posts and others explain how acupuncture works as a complementary medical practice and how it is different than standard western medical care, while enhancing the best aspects of that type of care.

Choose An Acupuncturist

Next, you must choose an acupuncturist to visit. To do this, many people ask their friends for suggestions or even their primary care doctor. Your insurance plan may have a list of licensed acupuncturists to whom they refer. Look at online reviews to gather more information. Search engines such as GoogleMaps, Facebook, and company’s websites are great places to learn more about the practice you’re considering. Here are two examples of good websites to visit: 


Certifications to Look For

Make sure your acupuncturist is licensed in your state and ask if the NCCAOM certified him or her. If you have a particular health concern for which you want help, consider this when choosing your practitioner. Some acupuncturists specialize in musculoskeletal conditions, fertility enhancement, weight loss, or even facial rejuvenation acupuncture. Just like many medical doctors, acupuncturists work in solo practice, or they may work in group clinics.

Schedule an Appointment

Call and schedule an appointment or go online and schedule an initial visit using a HIPAA-compliant online patient portal, if it is available for the practitioner you have chosen. Be prepared to complete healthcare information intake forms either online prior to your initial appointment, or in office. These forms include information such as your name, date of birth, address, gender, marriage status, employment, email address, phone number, any insurance information, as well as questions related to your health such as location and type of pain, history of trauma and surgeries, mental health, medications, and others. While the exam at an acupuncturist’s office will be professional and complete, some of the questions and observations used will be different than you may have experienced in your MD’s office. If you are unable to fill this information out in advance of your appointment, ask your provider if you can show up 15 minutes early to complete forms in the office.  

Millions of people have used acupuncture in the country and the world. Make the most of your upcoming health experience and enjoy the healing possibilities provided by acupuncture. If you have any questions, contact an acupuncturist, like an acupuncturist in Chapel Hill, NC, for more information. 

Thanks to Acupractic Natural Healing Center for their insight into how to prepare for an acupuncture appointment.