8 Steps for Your First Successful Acupuncture Treatment

So you have decided to take control of your health and have plucked up the courage to try acupuncture.  This article will help you prepare in order to get the most out of your treatment.


Try to avoid rushing to and from a treatment.  Rushing puts your heart rate up and can leave you feeling flustered.  Acupuncture in itself is calming but ideally you should go into a treatment feeling relaxed in order to make the most of it.  It’s not always easy when you are so busy but if you can try and make an oasis in the middle of the day to enjoy your treatment you will get more out of it.


  1. Exercise

Try to avoid doing really tough work-outs after acupuncture.  The treatment should leave you feeling calm and relaxed.  Diving into a circuit training or step class can dissipate that calmness.  Gentler exercises which make you sweat but don’t raise the heart rate are fine, i.e. yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi and Qi Gong.


  1. Eat

Avoid coming for acupuncture on an empty stomach, especially if this is your first treatment as you don’t know how your body might react to it.  If you haven’t eaten you might feel tired, light-headed and depleted after treatment.  Ideally have a meal about 2 hours beforehand.  If that’s not possible eat a banana prior to treatment.


  1. No Coffee or Tea

Don’t drink coffee or tea for at least 2 hours beforehand.  Both are stimulants which raise the heart rate and can stain the tongue, making it more difficult for your acupuncturist to make an accurate diagnosis. There has even been some research regarding this.  If you are desperate for a cuppa have a tea which is naturally decaffeinated.


  1. No Alcohol

Definitely don’t drink alcohol before a treatment and ideally none afterwards.  Acupuncture aims to bring more awareness to your body and your thoughts.  Having this impaired by alcohol can disrupt and weaken the treatment. Even if you have your treatment in the morning it is best to avoid alcohol for the rest of the day.

 Woman relaxing with acupuncture

  1. Medical History

Your acupuncturist will want to know all about your previous medical history; surgeries, accidents, medication and family health history.  It can save time if you have jotted these down beforehand.


  1. Wear Loose Clothing

It is easier if you wear loose clothing.  Sometimes you will have to remove your clothes, particularly if your back is being treated.  But often you can stay clothed as long as you wear things that roll up above the elbows, the knees and enable access to your belly.  If you prefer not to remove your clothes your acupuncturist will work around that.


  1. Turn off  Your Mobile Phone

Ideally turn it off completely, don’t just leave it on vibrate as any calls or messages will still be distracting.  Treat this as your time with no interruptions allowed.

And now you are ready to relax and make the most of your first acupuncture treatment.  Enjoy!


Please read the Acupuncture Treatment section of my website for information as to what you can expect at your first treatment.

Jackie Graham is a licensed acupuncturist working in Ealing W5 and W13.  She is passionate about helping people towards good health.  For an appointment email her at info@jackiegrahamacupuncture.com or call her on 07733274745.

You can also find Jackie at Bridge to Health, Ealing.


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