I’ve never been afraid of needles. I don’t particularly like them, but not the overwhelming and anxiety ridden fear that some people have. I have more of a distaste for doctors, which probably partially comes from growing up in a family where everything could be fixed by herbs, tinctures or in my dad’s case, masking tape. That being said, I still had some hesitation about my first acupuncture treatment. Everyone said that it wouldn’t hurt, but I was nervous anyway and to be honest, probably more apprehensive about answering all sorts of personal questions. I’ve heard so much about the benefits though, so I decided to rally and head in for an appointment. Yes, they did ask a lot of personal questions and you fill out a health questionnaire (much like you would at a doctor’s), but really it wasn’t so bad.
The first thing they did was Gua Sha which is sort of like a massage done with something that looks an awful lot like a miso soup spoon. I’m not going to lie – it did hurt a little bit, and actually was more uncomfortable than when the needles were inserted. The results (as you see in the picture), are pretty brutal looking! It doesn’t hurt once they’re done, and honestly the relief that you get from it is wonderful! In short, it breaks up collagen binding the muscles, and stimulates the area to encourage fresh blood and oxygen to the area.
After that, she went ahead with the needles. They really aren’t big, and while you do feel them going in, it’s just a teeny tiny pinch. The needles do vary in size for different treatments, but they aren’t that intimidating. Two were put on either side between my neck and shoulder. I was very tense and sore in that area, from sitting at a computer 8 hours a day (hence the Gua Sha as well). After inserting them she went back to the first one and started to massage the skin and muscle around the needle. She asked me if I felt anything. My answer was “Yeah, I feel like there’s a little needle stuck in there…”. After another few seconds of her fiddling, I suddenly felt an incredible release in the muscle. I’ve never felt anything that immediate and strong, not even with massages or Chiropractic work. I instantly felt better
After a treatment, at least for me, you sort of feel a little high. And calm and serene. That might be partially because they leave you by yourself with the needles in for maybe 10 or 15 minutes. So, you just lie there. You focus on your breathing and relaxing (and in my case, try not to think about being bored). If you’re like me and are busy enough, you don’t really get a chance to do that often. It was nice to just relax, be quiet and just, well, BE.
It often takes more than just one treatment to feel any significant difference so don’t give up if you’ve just tried it once! If nothing else, its a good time out and its great to lie there thinking “I am doing something good for myself!” I doubt anyone can convince you of this if you’re afraid of needles, but really, they don’t hurt! Consider a treatment, let them know up front you’re squeamish, and a good acupuncturist will talk you through it and use just a few of the most delicate needles they can. Want some more good news? Rick and Lorrie won’t be sticking you with needle anytime soon, but you can book an in room massage at the B&B!