Gain without Pain
Posted: April 2, 2012
Needles can be scary. For some people, the mere idea of a needle conjures up memories of childhood vaccination trauma – or even a painful sewing mishap.
Acupuncture needles are different. Unlike their ill-reputed counterparts used for injections or stitches, acupuncture needles are:
- The width of a human hair.
- Designed to glide into and out of the skin.
- Not inserted into the blood stream.
- Sterile, solid, stainless stell, containing no medications.
While there can be discomfort from the contact of the acupuncture needle with the qi after the needle has been inserted, it is quite rare for the insertion of a needle to be uncomfortable. Many patients don’t feel it at all. Others says that the insertion feels like a slight pressure.
A common misconception is that acupuncture needles are rigid and therefor must cause bleeding. Actually, acupuncture needles are so soft and flexible that the acupuncturist must use a guide tube to support the shaft of the needle on insertion; otherwise the needle would simply bend against the skin. The needles are so fine and, when handled by an experienced practitioner, so carefully placed that it would be very difficult to puncture arteries or veins. This is why bleeding does not occur.
There’s no medication in acupuncture. The medicine in acupuncture is your own qi that is already flowing inside of you, so there is no need to inject anything into the blood stream, nor to pull anyting out of the body — what most people experience when they have a painful needling experience in a doctor’s office.
Since 1998, I have worked with a number of needle-phobic paitnets who have told me at the end of their first treatment theat they didn’t even feel the needle insertion. Not one has found treatment too uncomfortable to return.