Dispelling the “fear of needles” when trying Acupuncture
I hear it day in and day out, people are too scared to try Acupuncture as they have a fear of needles. The truth is, people have a fear of Syringes, not Acupuncture Needles. We’ve all received vaccination injections when young, this is where this fear stems from. However, it is the age old how can you fear something you’ve never experienced?
Modern technology has truly come to the rescue for Acupuncture. Centuries, even decades ago, the quality of needles where no where near the high standard they are today. They are able to make them as thin as 0.25mm thick. Centuries ago they would’ve been 1mm thick or more. As they are also machine sharpened, they can achieve an almost sensationless insertion.
As shown in the adjacent photo, you can see the relative thickness of an Acupuncture needle versus a syringe, its almost a tenth of the thickness. When you have blood taken, its usually a 23G needle, which is 0.65mm thick, still almost 3 times thicker. An Acupuncture needle also isn’t hollow, nor is it designed to slice the skin, but instead part its way through, then seal up upon removal. Pain is very subjective, some people have a high pain threshold, other’s have none at all. Either way most people don’t feel more than the tiniest of pinches as the needle goes in. Any “discomfort” is often a result of activating the Acupuncture point when the needle reaches its required depth. This aching feeling is actually therapeutic, much like the tenderness you feel when massaging a sore muscle, and the relief that follows. Like with massage, there can be some discomfort, but this indicates the state of your body, and the amount of healing we need to do to get your health back on track. Remember, pain is the body’s way of telling you something is wrong. The aching associated with activating an Acupuncture point, is the body’s way of saying, “all hands are on deck to try and repair the damage”. We call this sensation “De Qi”.
My belief is, Chinese Medicine can help people avoid taking so many unnecessary drugs, and even avoid or delay surgery. The main reason people aren’t willing to try it is due to an irrational fear, which I feel is a real shame. The funny thing about all this though, is in the process of avoiding Acupuncture, people will either end up with Cortisone injections or surgery which will involve a lot thicker needles than I use.