Healing is a process. Nothing in life moves forever forward in a straight line. There are ups and downs and setbacks and forward leaps. Acupuncture can be part of your healing process. Individuals respond just this way – individually. Some feel a little worse for the first day or two, some feel significantly better, others notice no changes, and others have a progressive gradual improvement.
I wish I could tell each person how they will respond; I can provide the gamete of responses. The body, after an acupuncture session, will try to release the stuck energy or stuck qi.
· When the qi of a condition is deeply “stuck”, the result could be a greater sensation of pain as the qi tries to break through. After the release, sensation of pain is reduced.
· When the qi of a condition is moderately “stuck”, the qi is released with less stress and an improvement felt immediately. It won’t necessarily be 100%, but an improvement.
· When the qi of the body is weakened, qi has a reduced ability to flow freely. Acupuncture increases the body energy so the qi will flow. In this situation, no change may be felt because it takes longer to add energy to the system. Additional qi could cause greater sensation of pain until the qi is at the appropriate level.
Once the qi is flowing, treatment isn’t necessarily over. The general principle is to provide 10 to 12 consecutive treatments to improve a condition. If the condition has existed for years, improvement could take a few months of weekly treatments whereas a two month-old condition could be treated in 2-4 sessions. Treatments are needed to “teach” the body to keep qi flowing. If treatment is ceased early after just a couple sessions, the qi may return to a “stuck” state and the pain will return. Say a client is treated with acupuncture during the onset of a cold, the pathogen that caused the condition is released and the cold never takes form. Treatment could end there but ideally a few treatments to boost the immune system for prevention would be in order.
Emotions are related to qi. In Chinese medicine emotions flow with qi which flows with blood through the arteries and veins. Many conditions have emotional or behavioral correlations which could cause a condition to recur, or you may notice an emotional shift after a treatment or a gradual change over time. As the qi is rebalanced so are the emotions. Awareness around patterns and emotional symptoms can assist in curbing a recurrence of physical symptoms. Following a treatment protocol that includes a specific number of treatments; any dietary, herbal or lifestyle recommendations; and both practitioner and client participating in the process will enable the healing process.