The Veteran’s Choice Program now covers acupuncture in full. Acupuncture is a popular treatment option because of the sheer number of physical and psychological conditions it can treat, and now you can reap the incredible health benefits for free. At 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine in Bellevue, WA, in partnership with TriWest Healthcare Alliance, we are proud to offer benefits of acupuncture to US veterans.
What Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a form of traditional Chinese Medicine that started at least 3,000 years ago. In recent years, modern scientific studies have confirmed that this alternative medicine technique is useful for treating a variety of health conditions.
The process for this ancient healing technique involves the insertion of fine, solid needles into strategic locations of the body. The body is made up of a complex system of nerves and muscles. When placed into a specific nerve or tissue called acupoints, the needles stimulate the energy meridians to relieve symptoms of a variety of physical and psychological conditions.
What It Helps
Pain, brain function, mental health, and sleep disorders are among the many conditions your acupuncturist can treat. If sticking needles into your skin concerns you, don’t worry. Acupuncture needles are so small that they don’t create discomfort when we put them in place or during treatment. All our needles are pre-sterilized and disposable.
When Did the VA Approve Acupuncture for Veterans?
A wealth of studies show that acupuncture for veterans can provide unparalleled relief. According to the US National Library of Medicine, 185,000 acupuncture treatments were provided to veterans in 2017 by the Veteran’s Health Administration (VHA).
In February of 2018, the VHA officially acknowledged that acupuncture is an independent profession outside of the protocol of general medical practitioners. They called this measure the Acupuncture Qualification Standard. It allowed VA facilities to hire licensed acupuncturists and provide cost coverage to veterans seeking acupuncture services.
How Can Acupuncture Help Veterans?
The healing power of acupuncture has been used for thousands of years to treat various health problems. The National Institutes of Health surveyed veterans about the usefulness of acupuncture, and all results were in favor of the treatment. Every survey concluded that the majority of vets experienced a noticeable reduction in symptoms and an improvement in their general health and wellbeing.
Benefits of Acupuncture for Veterans
Below we look at some of the most common conditions for which veterans seek acupuncture treatment. Please keep in mind that the list below is not all-inclusive; acupuncture can help more conditions than it is possible to list in full. Call us if you have an issue not listed here. We are happy to answer your questions and provide further information about your treatment options.
Acupuncture is a natural stress eliminator that can help in substance abuse recovery. Getting acupuncture may help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms from alcohol, tobacco, opioids, and other drugs. Treatment allows you and your body time to diverge from the habit by reducing the challenging and often painful effects caused by no longer using substances.
Amputation Neuroma Pain
Acupuncture works better than drugs for neuroma pain. Neuroma pain has a reputation for being hard to treat, especially for those who have undergone amputation. Painkillers are often not enough to ward off this pain. However, acupuncture is an excellent alternative treatment for neuroma pain, and science proves it.
A study published by “Science Direct” found that 80% of amputee patients experience an improvement in pain after one acupuncture session. Some patients in the study enjoyed long-lasting relief from neuroma pain. They reported pain alleviation for months or years after receiving treatment.
Anxiety and Panic
Acupuncture eases tension and stress without pharmaceuticals. At 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine, we design each of your treatment sessions to maximize your comfort and relaxation.
Visiting your acupuncturist for anxiety disorders and panic disorder treatment could improve your quality of life. You’ll experience the best results after around five to ten weeks, depending on the frequency of your appointments.
Chronic fatigue is one symptom of Gulf War Illness, and acupuncture can help. Feeling tired and low-energy all the time can take a toll on your day-to-day functioning.
Acupuncture can restore your physical and mental energy if you suffer from chronic fatigue or chronic fatigue syndrome. Symptoms like insomnia and pain are often associated with chronic fatigue syndrome, and they can also fade with treatment.
Acupuncture is a potent pain management solution. Many veterans experience chronic pain, widespread pain, or fibromyalgia. Living with achy joints, muscles, headaches, and other pain is unbearable at times, and medication can only go so far. Studies far and wide have concluded that acupuncture eases chronic pain in most clients.
If you are experiencing chronic pain, know that you don’t have to suffer in silence. Contact us today for a free consultation to help manage your pain.
Mounting evidence suggests that acupuncture is a worthwhile treatment for depression. Everyone deserves to feel joy in life. Depression or consistently low mood changes the way we see and interact with the world.
Nowadays, the first line of defense against depression is antidepressant medication. Some veterans report that these drugs aren’t sufficient for their depression. Acupuncture helps boost mood and lift the veil of depression, particularly when added to an existing therapy regimen.
You can treat the full gamut of gastrointestinal disorders with acupuncture. We can treat anything from nausea, diarrhea, and constipation to IBS, peptic ulcers, and Crohn’s disease. Elevated stress levels contribute to the development and worsening of many digestive issues. We work to bring both your mind and body back into balance.
Hearing Loss and Tinnitus
Acupuncture is useful in the treatment of both hearing loss and tinnitus. Hearing loss and tinnitus is a common struggle for veterans. Although hearing aids can help manage the effects of hearing loss, tinnitus can feel maddening.
When nerve damage causes your hearing loss, this treatment is particularly beneficial. Our clients also find that tinnitus becomes less noticeable after an appointment. Ringing in the ears may become quieter and less intense in as little as one session. Ongoing acupuncture for tinnitus sessions provides further relief.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Acupuncture offers a significant improvement in symptoms of PTSD. Statistics show that between 11% and 20% of veterans have PTSD. Signs of the disorder include flashbacks, nightmares, emotional numbness, irritation, insomnia, depression, and anxiety.
Many veterans don’t seek treatment for PTSD because they aren’t convinced it will help, but evidence suggests otherwise. Many studies prove the efficacy of acupuncture in PTSD treatment. Contact us today to learn more about how acupuncture can help alleviate any symptoms of PTSD you may be experiencing.
Sleep is the time when our body heals itself; missing out on sleep can impact more than just concentration and mood. The relaxing acupuncture process creates melatonin and eases tension and anxiety to help you fall asleep faster and stay that way throughout the night. If you find it tough to get to sleep, wake up frequently, or toss and turn, a trip to your acupuncturist could revolutionize your life.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) or Concussion
Acupuncture can repair brain neurons after a TBI incident and ease symptoms like headaches, anxiety, fear, and depression. Relaxation is an essential component in healing from a TBI or concussion, and this treatment promotes a total relaxation in the brain and body.
Where Do You Put the Needles?
Acupuncture points exist all over the body, and where we’ll place the needles depends on the condition you are treating. These acupoints work like a web throughout the body and often cross one another. We usually place between 10 to 20 needles on specific interacting acupoints each session.
Most commonly, we place needles in the arms and legs, but we may also put them in the abdomen and back. Sometimes, we’ll stimulate acupoints in the ears or scalp, but only if your condition calls for this.
Is Acupuncture Safe?
Acupuncture is extremely safe. We only use disposable pre-sterilized needles for each treatment session. All of our acupuncturists are highly skilled and trained professionals who are licensed to perform the treatment safely. We know which angles, depths, and positions the needles must go to provide relief while avoiding injury.
Are There Side Effects?
One of the top reasons so many clients chose acupuncture is because, unlike pharmaceutical remedies, acupuncture is virtually free from side effects. Occasionally, some people experience slight bruising at the placement site, but these small bruises usually fade quickly. We also recommend that you eat before your appointment because low blood sugar can cause lightheadedness.
How Often Will I Need a Session?
We recommend attending two appointments per week for the first two or three weeks. Frequent treatment is the best way to stabilize your condition at the outset. After we’ve stabilized your condition, you only must come once per week.
This treatment is momentum based, so it’s better to get a lot of therapy at first and taper down to fewer appointments. Some clients benefit most from scheduling an appointment every day at first. We suggest daily treatment for some pregnant women, acute stroke suffers, and those experiencing facial paralysis.
How Long Is an Acupuncture Session?
The treatment process from beginning to end will take between 30 to 45 minutes on average. If you have several conditions or complex conditions, your initial appointment may take up to 1.5 hours with follow-up treatments lasting only 30 to 45 minutes. We will give you more precise information about how long your sessions will last and a recommended session schedule when you come in for your consultation.
How Do I Prepare for a Session?
Preparing for your session is an integral part of the therapeutic process. There are two main ways you can prepare yourself for an acupuncture session: eat a meal beforehand and wear loose clothing.
Eat Before Your Appointment
Always eat before coming to your appointment. Eating raises your blood sugar, and best prepares you to receive acupuncture treatment. Not eating before your session could cause you to feel lightheaded during treatment and exhausted after treatment.
Wear Loose Clothing
An acupuncture session is meant to be relaxing, so please come prepared by wearing loose, comfortable clothing. You keep your clothes on during acupuncture treatment. We may need access to your legs, arms, or other body parts, so please wear clothing that you can easily roll up to expose your skin when necessary for treatment.
Why Should I Choose 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine?
At 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine, we offer the broadest scope of acupuncture for veterans treatment. Our friendly and highly trained expert staff have many years’ experience helping people like you. We offer free consultations to anyone interested in the healing benefits of acupuncture.
Schedule a Free Consultation
Acupuncture has already helped thousands of veterans reclaim their health and vitality. We specialize in treating the common conditions veterans experience. Contact us today at 1st Choice Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine in Bellevue, WA, to schedule your free consultation. We look forward to meeting you.