Do Acupuncture needles cause pain?

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As known to most of us, acupuncture needle is one of the essentials during practices of Traditional Chinese Medicine Acupuncture therapies. It is one of the most familiar tools to acupuncturists during their work. Different acupuncture needles can have different feelings to patients during the therapies.

Acupuncture involves the insertion of needles into specific place on the body. Patients who receive treatments do not have the same sensation as others. Some of them said that the needles feel painless or only feel a slight prick or a tingling feeling for hours. Some of them said that they felt intense pain. But will the acupuncture needles hurt or cause a lot of pain eventually? This is one of the biggest concerns for many people who have not received acupuncture yet.

In order to answer this question, we need to acknowledge more about the needle itself.

What are the most acupuncture needles on the market made of?

Acupuncture needles are typically made of stainless steel, making them flexible and preventing them from rusting or breaking.  Needles are usually disposed of after each use to prevent contamination. Reusable needles when used should be sterilized between applications.

What are the sizes of the acupuncture needles?

Acupuncture needles are much finer than those needles used for injections and blood tests. In fact, it is 25-50 times thinner than hypodermic needles. Needles length is vary from 13 to 130 millimeters (0.51 to 5.12 in). Usually shorter needles used near the face and eyes area, and longer needles in areas required deeper insertions. Needle diameters could be 0.16 mm (0.006 in) , 0.30 mm to 0.46 mm (0.018 in). Thicker needles used on more robust patients. Choose high quality acupuncture needles at the correct sizes are important for acupuncture treatments.

Where are the insertion points?

Most of the acupuncture points are away from nerve. If the acupuncturist inserted at the correct location, patients will not have a strong feeling of discomfort.  If during the procedure, patients have a sharp pain, it is better to tell acupuncturist because it is possible that the insertion point is not correct.

Do acupuncture needles hurt?

During the insertion of the needles, guide tubes may used for thinner needles. And needles may be manipulated in various ways, including spinning, flicking, or moving up and down relative to the skin. Skilled and trained acupuncturist will finish the insertion in a really quick manner. Since most pain is felt in the superficial layers of the skin, a quick insertion of the needle is recommended.

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