• Alison Howlett

Big needles and Little needles....



Acupuncture needles come in different gauges (diameter) and lengths to be used on the different areas of the body where they are to be inserted. The needles used nowadays are mostly very fine — they vary from 0.12 mm to 0.35 mm.

Acupuncture needles are inserted to various depths at strategic points on your body. This is why it’s important to see a professionally trained acupuncturist as knowing the correct depth to insert needles is important not only for the usefulness of the treatment but for safety. The needles are very thin, so insertion usually causes little discomfort. People often don't feel them inserted at all, or at worst a momentary sting no different to when you pluck a hair. Between five and 25 needles are used in a typical treatment. You may feel a mild aching or heavy sensation when a needle reaches the correct depth.

In most cases, the needles remain in place for around 20 minutes while you lie still and relax. Sometimes the acupuncturist will stimulate the needles manually or even use electro acupuncture, where electrodes send a mild current through the needles for extra stimulation. Sometimes heat will also be applied to the area. There is usually no discomfort when the needles are removed. Occasionally there is the loss of a tiny drop of blood and now and then, a small bruise.

With any treatment you are having carried out, both Marianne and myself, use Sterile, Single use needles, this means that all the needles we use, (quite a few for acupuncture) and one for venepuncture, you can be assured the needles are Fresh, Sterile, In Date and will only be used once, on you ONLY.