Does acupuncture hurt?
Generally no, acupuncture treatment doesn't hurt.
Some people will feel the acupuncture needle go in, but it's not painful, you just notice it, like a little prick. Once the needle is in, you may feel a dull ache or a tingling sensation, which is normal.
Having a needle inserted into the fingers or toes may feel sharp but this will only last a second or two.
Why do some acupuncture points hurt?
These things can make acupuncture feel more painful include:
- An acupuncturist who uses thick acupuncture needles. This gives a better reaction with the acupuncture point, but this reaction can be more uncomfortable
- An acupuncturist who stimulates the acupuncture needles once they are in. Some styles of acupuncture like to strongly stimulate the needles for maximum effect, which can be uncomfortable to the person receiving it.
- Having electric acupuncture, which is stronger but again more uncomfortable
When people are weak, they are more fragile and vulnerable and their pain levels reduce, making them more sensitive. This is why is not advisable to have acupuncture treatment when menstruating.
Why do people think acupuncture is painful?
When people think of acupuncture they tend to think of having a blood test, which uses thick needles that go into veins and is painful. Acupuncture needles are very fine, so fine that you can get 20 of them into 1 syringe and the acupuncture needles aren't put into veins, but instead into muscle tissue. So having acupuncture is not painful like having a blood test.