How Does Acupuncture Work?

What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a key component of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It is an ancient practice (thousands of years old) that involves inserting fine needles into specific points on the body. It’s based on the ancient Taoist principle that energy, or “Qi” (pronounced “chee”), flows through the body along pathways known as channels. Acupuncture aims to restore and maintain health by stimulating specific points along these meridians.

How Does Acupuncture Work? The mechanisms of action proposed for acupuncture are complex and multifaceted. Here are some of the primary ways acupuncture is believed to work, based on the current available research:

  1. Promoting Vasodilation and Increasing Blood Flow: Acupuncture can inhibit central sympathetic nerve activity, leading to vasodilation, which is the widening of blood vessels. This increased blood flow particularly benefits the ovaries and uterus, making it a potentially valuable treatment in women’s health and fertility.

  2. Inducing Neurotransmitter Release: Acupuncture may induce the release of neurotransmitters which activate Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). This can increase ovulation, menstrual regularity, and overall fertility.

  3. Increasing Endogenous Opioids and Endorphins: Acupuncture is thought to increase the body’s production of natural painkillers like opioids and endorphins. This helps mitigate the body’s adverse stress responses, promoting a sense of wellbeing and relaxation.

(Reference: International Journal of Women’s Health, 2014; 6:313-325)

What to Expect During Your First Visit

Your first acupuncture session will begin with a detailed consultation. Your acupuncturist will ask about your medical history, lifestyle, and symptoms to get a holistic picture of your health and your goals. Here’s what you can expect:

  1. Assessment: The practitioner may conduct a physical exam, which could include checking your pulse and observing the color and coating of your tongue, as these are important diagnostic tools in TCM.

  2. Treatment Plan: Based on your consultation, your acupuncturist will develop a treatment plan tailored to your needs.

  3. The Acupuncture Session: You’ll be asked to recline and relax on a treatment table. Your acupuncturist will insert very thin, sterile needles into specific acupuncture points. Most people find it very relaxing (more than they expect). You should feel minimal discomfort; and your practitioner will work with you to make you as comfortable as possible. Once you’re cozy and warm, we let you rest (and maybe nap) in the dark room for approximately 20 minutes while you drift away to the soft music, or drift off to sleep.

  4. Duration: Each session typically lasts between 30 to 60 minutes. The number of sessions needed varies based on your individual condition and response to treatment, and your practitioner will discuss this with you.

  5. Post-Treatment Care: After the session, you might feel blissfully relaxed (we call it the acupuncture high) or very energised. Make sure to stay hydrated and avoid super strenuous activities immediately after your treatment to enjoy the relaxing effects for as long as you can. Don’t forget to do your homework as asked to by your practitioner!

Acupuncture offers a unique and time-tested approach to health. Whether you’re seeking relief from a specific condition or looking to enhance overall wellness, acupuncture could be a valuable addition to your healthcare regimen. We hope to see you in the clinic soon!

Dr Grace Jones

About the Author:
Dr. Grace Jones (BHSc.Acu) is the founder at Bloom Chinese Medicine. She is a passionate and nationally qualified and registered acupuncturist, with special interests in women’s health, natural fertility, pregnancy, digestive health and emotional wellness. Learn more about Grace here.

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Shop 2/106 Sixth Avenue, Maroochydore, QLD, 4558

Monday: 8:30am- 8.00pm

Tuesday: 9:00am – 8:00pm

Wednseday: 9:00am-8:00pm

Thursday: 8:30am – 8:00pm

Friday: 9:00am- 7:00pm

Saturday: 9:00am – 12:00pm



Bloom Chinese Medicine is an integrative Chinese medicine and acupuncture clinic committed to providing the best outcomes for our patients, and empowering them along their journey to optimal fertility and wellness. Centrally located in Maroochydore on the Sunshine Coast, we have visitors from local suburbs and all over Queensland.

Proudly servicing Buddina, Maroochydore, Mooloolaba, Alexandra Headland, Buderim, Kawana, Minyama, Parrearra, Warana, Birtinya, Bokarina, Wurtulla, Little Mountain, Caloundra, Aroona, Bells Creek, Meridian Plains, Palmview, Sippy Downs, Mountain Creek, Kuluin, Kunda Park, Diddillibah, Twin Waters, Pacific Paradise, Mudjimba, Marcoola, Bli Bli, Coolum, Yaroomba, Yandina, Ninderry, Valdora, Peregian Springs, Peregian Beach, Doonan, Noosaville, Noosa, Noosaville, Tewantin, Doonan, and Nambour.