A few weekends ago, I was with two of my friends wondering if I would continue taking Korean lessons, if I was able to finish my huge American breakfast, and if acupuncture would help my sore neck and shoulders. I ended up learning all of those answers within 2 hours when I found myself skipping Korean class in a doctor's waiting room with my friend Jason looking through cosmetic surgery books.
|This is a mark left from the cupping about ten minutes after the procedure.|
I hate needles. Well, I thought I did. Yeah, I'm pretty sure I still do. But I've been hyping myself up on getting laser hair removal, I'm seriously considering getting a tattoo, and I'd been toying with the idea of acupuncture for a while. Really, everything happened too fast for me to get freaked out. Jason said he'd go with me if I wanted him to, there wasn't much of a line for the doctor, and then, before I knew it, I was ushered into the changing room then lying face first on a bench and explaining where my soreness was to the acupuncturist.
Go figure, but the needles just felt like little needles. Actually, once they were in, I couldn't feel them at all as long as I didn't move. I did move at one point, just to see if I could feel them, and I immediately regretted it. I'm pretty sure my moving readjusted one of the needles to an angle it wasn't meant to rest at.
It was pretty neat to be forced to lie there quietly. There was a heat lamp above me (I felt like a lizard), and piano music around me. Heck, I was paying to nap, I might as well take advantage of it! My friend Holly has fallen asleep during acupuncture before, and I was really hoping that would happen to me, but it didn't happen. I guess I've got a reason to try it again.
This was taken two days after the procedure.
I hadn't expected it to get any cupping, but it made sense once I saw it was coming. After taking the needles out, the doctor placed four small glass cups on my back and used a pump to create a suction that lifted my skin and blood away from my body. It's designed to suck out blood that's been contaminated by the released toxins. It also seriously encourages blood flow to the treated area to bring about faster or better healing. This part felt strange and it hurt a little, but I liked it in the way a really hard massage or a deep scratching on an itchy head feels good.
Once I was all finished, I moved my muscles around to see if I felt any difference. I didn't detect any sudden benefit. In fact, Jason and I both said that we felt like our muscles were warm and ready for a deep tissue massage. To this day, we're both pretty sure that a massage would have sealed the affects of what we were going for.
I'm interested to see what regular visits or treatment in a different area would do for me. I would probably go again.
Have you ever tried acupuncture? Any other stories about what it was like? And what about cupping? It was completely foreign to me until two weeks ago!