What does acupuncture do?

By stimulating innate healing responses, acupuncture helps correct imbalances in the body/mind for prevention and healing. National Institute of Health publications affirm the benefits of acupuncture for a variety of medical conditions. Acupuncture is also helpful for many concerns with no clear origin or cause. By addressing the underlying source of the condition as well as symptoms, acupuncture provides holistic care and sustained relief.

Why choose acupuncture?

Since treatments are tailored to the individual on a case-by-case basis, it is frequently more effective than conventional medical treatment alone for both existing conditions and preventative measures. Many find the treatments to be stress-relieving and relaxing as well, leading to a variety of additional benefits. Acupuncture also works well in conjunction with medications, physical therapy and other forms of treatment.

Does insurance cover acupuncture?

Some insurers including Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cigna, and United Healthcare, cover acupuncture. You can usually find out by calling the number on your insurance card or I can verify your insurance coverage for you prior to treatment.

What is a typical acupuncture visit like?

At the first treatment, we will discuss your reason(s) for treatment, and I will use therapeutic touch to gain information about the condition and how to proceed with treatment. Then, very fine, sterile needles will be placed in in various points along meridians and/or muscle groups. Other therapies may be incorporated depending on their appropriateness for the condition. You may then rest for a brief time during which you might drift off to sleep, daydream or enter a deeply relaxed state while you receive the full benefits of the treatment. In subsequent sessions, we will track your progress from week to week and adjust treatments accordingly.

How long are treatments?

An hour and a half is recommended for the first treatment to allow adequate time for a thorough intake and well-rounded treatment. Follow-up sessions typically last about an hour.

How many visits will I need?

The number of treatments recommended depends on the condition. Generally, recent injuries or acute conditions take a shorter course or approximately 3-5 consecutive weekly treatments. Chronic conditions (over 6 months) may require more treatments over a longer period of time. I offer treatment on a sliding scale to provide an affordable way to complete an ideal cycle of care. If you would rate the intensity of your condition a 5 or above (on a scale of 1 – 10 with 10 being the worst), you can schedule treatments twice a week. If it is below a 5 on the scale, you can schedule treatments 1 week apart.

How should I prepare for treatment?

Prior to your first treatment, you will be asked to fill out an Intake. This form can be printed and brought to the office completed, or you can arrive 15 minutes early to your appointment to do so. Please come in loose comfortable clothes, or bring a change of clothes with you, and eat a light meal at least a couple of hours before the treatment. If you have insurance, please bring your card.

Does acupuncture hurt?

Acupuncture needles are much thinner than any other medical needles (about the diameter of a strand of hair). Typical sensations one may experience are warmth or a dull aching feeling, or you may not even notice the needles at all.

Is acupuncture safe?

Acupuncture utilizes only packaged, sterile and disposable one-time-use needles. When performed by a trained, licensed, board-certified professional like myself, acupuncture is extremely safe. I earned my Master of Science degree in acupuncture after completing 3 years of full time study totaling over 3000 hours, and have years of successful clinical experience.

What should I expect after treatment?

The effects of treatment run their course throughout a few days to a week afterward. Some individuals may experience total or partial relief after the first few treatments, while others may notice a steady, gradual improvement as it works cumulatively. In some cases, no relief may be felt at all until after several days go by. Some people may notice that their condition actually seems to be temporarily worse before it gets better; this is also a normal healthy response to treatment. Particularly in treating pain conditions with gua sha, my experience is that people feel nearly immediate relief. Since treatment is holistic, often the primary issue improves along with other health indicators such as digestion or sleep quality. I ask my patients to make note of the changes they experience as this information can help guide subsequent treatments.


“As a graduate student, wife and mother I was exhausted.  I went to Margie for acupuncture to restore enough of my strength and willpower to finish the last year of my Masters program.  I only wish I would have discovered the benefits of acupuncture sooner.” – D.S.