Most folk know what happens when somebody attends a General Practitioner or Family Doctor, either they or somebody they know will have had experience of it. Yet this might not be the case regarding acupuncturists, so lets look at what happens when you attend clinic.
Your initial consultation will quite often be more lengthy than follow up ones. This is because we spend a lot of time discussing your presenting concern, we really want to know the ins and outs about it, from length of time you have had the problem, to any trigger factors you have realised set it off, if anything relieves your symptoms. If Pain is your concern we want to know about the nature of this, sharp, dull, ache, spasmodic, constant etc this information helps us differentiate our diagnosis regarding Qi or Blood issues plus gives us an idea of how long you might need treatment for to resolve the problem.
Once we have exhausted the topic about your main concern, we then move on to asking more generalised questions about you, emotionally, socially, psychologically and physically. This is what helps us tailor our treatment to meet your specific needs. Some of these questions might seem quite random considering what you are presenting with but they are invaluable in piecing together the jigsaw about you.
Traditional Chinese medicine is not really an off the rack one size fits all medicine. Lets look at asthma to expand on this. 10 folk could attend their Western medical practitioner suffering with asthma, it is highly likely that they would all be put on inhalers and advised to take similar doses. If those 10 folk came to us, it is highly unlikely that they would receive the same treatment. We draw up a prescription of acupuncture points which we needle based on individual findings, some of these people might have a weakness in their Water energy, or Metal energy or Earth energy and a treatment plan is drawn up accordingly.
Next we examine you, which involves palpating the affected area and some acupuncture points.
A lot of folk feel a bit embarrassed at being asked to stick their tongue out only to be gazed upon by a practitioner’s eyes. There really is no need for embarrassment, that tongue of yours is an amazing diagnostic tool. It’s colour, coating, size and shape gives a wealth of information to us which very aids our diagnosis.
Palpating your Pulse is another great diagnostic tool. We check both the right and left, and the superficial level right down to the deep level. More often than not we will just sit quietly whilst we concentrate on getting a true feel for these. We are assessing the rate, regularity, speed, depth and quality in quite a few positions.
On Day 23 focus will be on treatment plan, acupuncture point prescription and how many and how often treatment is needed.