Does Acupuncture Hurt?

Does Acupuncture Hurt?


Does Acupuncture Actually Hurt?

Chances are you’ve seen pictures or videos of somebody receiving acupuncture and you may have thought to yourself, “acupuncture looks like it hurts!”. This is a fair assumption, because it appears as though you are having needles stuck into your body. Even though it may seem painful, it’s actually not for the majority of patients. You’ve probably read about the wonderful, positive effects acupuncture can bring to your body, or perhaps some of your friends have nothing but great things to say about it. With all of this positive buzz surrounding acupuncture, you may still be wondering; does acupuncture hurt? We answer your question, and more, below.

What Does Acupuncture Feel Like?

Don’t worry, the vast majority of people experience no pain with acupuncture treatment. If anything, you might feel a slight pinprick, or perhaps a mild tingling sensation. Most patients feel almost nothing at all, except maybe the ever so slight pressure of the needle on your skin. Even if you were in the minority of people who felt a tingle or an ache at the acupuncture point, the sensation will not be a painful one which causes you to grimace in pain.

It Feels Good!

Quite the contrary, you won’t feel pain, but a completely different sensation which will make you wish you would have not waited so long to receive acupuncture treatment. This sensation is what we call “qi”, and while everybody feels “qi” differently, but it is never sharp or painful. Acupuncture is a comfortable experience which most people relate with these sensations:


The acupuncture needle can cause a tingling sensation at the site sometimes immediately, and sometimes intermittently throughout the body while the acupuncture session is occurring. This is a pleasant sensation.


There are certain acupuncture points which may give you a slight shock, or “zapped” feeling. This is not painful, but can be surprising to some. Don’t worry, the jolt quickly disappears. The reason for this sensation is due to the nerve being stimulated which runs directly beneath the acupuncture point.


Many patients will feel a warmth which spreads throughout the body, engulfing the acupuncture points. This warming effect is similar to a heating pad on different parts of your body, and is a pleasant feeling.


Sometimes the acupuncture point can feel as though a weight was placed on the area. This weight can expand to the other areas of body where the acupuncture points are also placed. This feeling of heaviness is relaxing and provides a sense of calmness.

We’re Here for You

If you are nervous about acupuncture because you are afraid of the needles hurting, come talk to us and we will happily talk you through the process and all of the different sensations you may feel. We will also discuss with you the various benefits of an acupuncture treatment plan and what we can do to help. Contact us today for an appointment!

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If you want more information about how we can help you be healthy, live better and enjoy fully, don’t hesitate to contact us. We are located in the Calabria Office Building (1 mile off Hill Country Galleria in Bee Cave Road) and are easily accessible from the Lakeway, Bee Cave and Westlake Austin areas.

Tel. 512 263 4099
Tel/Fax. 512 263 4065

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