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Acutake May 2018

Acutake May 2018, Jennifer L. Fockler, L.Ac. in Chicago, IL

Jennifer L. Fockler, L.Ac. offers Acupuncture in Chicago, IL

By Sara Calabro

Most people, when they hear about the benefits of acupuncture, find themselves thinking, “That would be so good for me!” Less stress, more energy, better sleep and digestion… Who doesn’t want that? But for many people, there’s one thing holding them back from enjoying the benefits of acupuncture: They’re scared of needles.

There’s a spectrum of needle fears, ranging from downright needle phobic to being moderately concerned about the whole voluntarily-being-stuck-with-needles thing. Regardless, fear of needles is the number-one reason people pass on acupuncture.

Acupuncturists get asked about the tool they wield all the time. Here’s what they tell people who say they’d love to try acupuncture but are scared of needles.

Acupuncture needles are nothing like the needles you know.
“Needle apprehension is very common and natural, considering that we have been conditioned to associate needles with pain—think dentists, blood draws, and IVs,” says acupuncturist Kathryn Peak. “But acupuncture needles are hair-thin and nothing like the needles we are accustomed to in a medical setting.”

“Acupuncture is the most gentle form of needling possible,” adds acupuncturist David Bonilla. “If acupuncture was anything like getting a shot, I wouldn’t be in business!”

Most people who have never had acupuncture do not realize how thin acupuncture needles are. They bend when you touch them. For an up-close look at an acupuncture needle, check out this article.

Kids do it.
Acupuncturist Adam Cantor reminds people that the needling sensation from acupuncture is so gentle that even kids are cool with it.

“If children are okay with getting acupuncture, it can’t be so bad,” says Cantor.

Acupuncturist Naomi Richman takes a similar approach when faced with needle-phobic adults. “I had an exclusively pediatric acupuncture practice for six years, and I still see a ton of kiddos for acupuncture,” she says. “When adults tell me they are afraid of needles, I share anecdotes about a child I recently saw who was really brave, or I tell them, ‘This morning, I did acupuncture on a two-month old.'”

Acupuncturist Robin Green has a whole website dedicated to kids loving acupuncture. This is a real thing.