Is it Possible to Have Acupuncture Without Needles in Montpelier and Williston, Vermont?

Acupuncture uses very fine needles to stimulate specific points on the body to help regulate the body’s functioning. You can imagine several strands of hair put together to equal the thickness of an acupuncture needle. Though these needles are so fine, some still have fear at the thought of inserting a needle through the skin. This fear may limit one’s access to a therapy that can ease the acute or chronic pain, insomnia, constipation, fatigue or other struggle they may be suffering with.


Acupressure Rather Than Acupuncture

We have patients of all ages at Integrative Acupuncture in Montpelier and Williston who aren’t able to have acupuncture because of their fear of needles or a high level of emotional or physical sensitivity. So the alternative for them is acupuncture without needles, or acupressure. This is when we stimulate the appropriate points with the thumbs, fingers, and sometimes elbows. Acupuncture and acupressure use the same points and channels though use different tools for stimulation. Stimulating these points eases muscular tension and stress, promotes blood circulation, and can normalize internal organ functioning.  Acupuncture was actually created out of acupressure.  Thousands of years ago, physicians in China realized the benefits of acupressure and began making their acupressure tools more and more fine until they were so fine they were able to puncture the skin.  Acupuncture was then born.


Is Acupuncture More Effective?

People ask if acupuncture is more effective than acupressure. My experience is that they can yield equally effective results. It is debated as to the diameter of an acupuncture point. Upon stimulation of the point there is a sensation that the practitioner typically perceives which the patient may feel as well. The patient may feel a pressure or fullness, a dull throb, or a tingling or radiating sensation. When searching for the point, it is found that some have a larger area of stimulation (a quarter size) while others may be slightly larger than the tip of the needle. So needling a point can be more direct and precise from the skilled acupuncturist to achieve the affect, while pressing with the diameter of the thumb can assure that the point is stimulated but with less directness. Imagine a point on the lower back of a larger person. A needle can easily penetrate through the layer of fatty tissue to reach the muscle level getting directly to the point, while acupressure may be a broader stimulation and may be more challenging to sustain appropriate pressure.


So my longer answer to this question often depends on what the condition is that we are treating, where the points are that will be most effective to stimulate, and what will create less anxiety and more comfort for the patient. Being in a very heightened state of anticipation or fear ultimately could affect the outcome of the treatment.


Comfort is Important

At Integrative Acupuncture, we realize that the ability to relax physically, mentally, and emotionally relates to the effectiveness of our treatment. If the thought of acupuncture needles is too overwhelming, we welcome you to receive acupressure. We recognize that the physical touch itself can affect the body in certain very valuable ways. Whether needles are used or not, there will be nice music, comfortable and inviting space, and friendly people to help guide you toward better health.