One of the oldest medical traditions, acupuncture involves stimulation of anatomical points on the body. Stimulation most commonly involves penetrating the skin with hair-thin, solid, metallic needles that are manipulated by the acupuncturist. People report different experiences, though most individuals report little or no pain. In fact, many people report feeling either energized or pleasantly relaxed following a treatment. Acupuncture is designed to restore a state of balance to the body by unblocking vital energy that according to traditional Chinese medicine flows through the body along energy meridians. Western medicine has not fully explained how acupuncture works, but it has been proposed that acupuncture might help regulate the nervous and immune systems of the body.

Frequent Uses

  • Chronic and acute pain control
  • Nausea and vomiting related to chemotherapy
  • Addiction
  • Stroke Rehabilitation
  • Headache
  • Menstrual Cramps
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Myofascial pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • RSI
  • Asthma


Individuals who are pregnant, have a pacemaker or heart condition, have a seizure disorder, skin infection, or those with a bleeding disorder or taking blood thinners should discuss this with their physicians and/or acupuncturist before proceeding with acupuncture. While acupuncture is sometimes used to treat symptoms in cancer patients, it should not be used in lieu of standard medical treatment. Individuals should not receive acupuncture while intoxicated.

Practitioner Training

Licensure and training standards vary by states. In Massachusetts acupuncturists must be licensed by the state. Licensure requirements include successful completion of at least 2 years of undergraduate study (including coursework in biology, physiology, and anatomy), at least 1350 hours of clinical instruction in acupuncture, training in herbal medicine, and the comprehensive state licensing examination. All acupuncturists at the Center for Wellness are licensed by the state of Massachusetts.