Acupuncture basics; what you need to know

From an Eastern perspective, acupuncture is meant to encourage the smooth flow of qi (energy) through the 14 channels (meridians) which surge through the body, each relating to a particular organ and/or bodily function. When this flow of energy is blocked somewhere along one or more of the channels, this obstruction is thought to manifest itself as illness or pain within the body.

From a Western perspective, acupuncture works via the nervous system. When a needle is inserted under the skin, there is stimulation of high-threshold, small-diameter nerves in the muscle, which send messages to the spinal cord and then activate three centers- the spinal cord, midbrain and the pituitary, releasing neurochemicals (endorphins and monoamines) and hormones back down through the body. Depending upon which of the roughly 400 or so points were strategically chosen by the acupuncturist, the neural stimulation will create a specified effect. For example, neurochemicals block “pain” messages, while other points can stimulate a targeted hormone.

Although The Garden specializes in Mental Health issues and Reproductive/ Gynecological Health and Fertility, acupuncture is highly effective for a variety of conditions.

Stress (and eventual Burnout) is currently viewed as a global epidemic of our society, creating a host of issues including anxiety, depression, fatigue, sleep disturbances and setting a foundation for disease and disharmony to flourish. Embracing acupuncture, herbs and self-care practices often combined with talk therapy or CBT, offer a personalized plan for healing and restoration.

Endocrinology issues such as slow metabolism, hypo/hyperthyroidism, diabetes prevention/ management, fertility, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), menopause and adrenal fatigue.

Acupuncture is also very effective at treating pain of any kind, whether it be muscular, skeletal, neurological (nerve-related) or arthritic. At The Garden, we also practice a very gentle form of IMS, (intramuscular stimulation) a unique treatment to ease tight, tense muscles, especially those that have been unresponsive to other therapies.

What could I expect from a typical treatment?

Typically, the first treatment would begin with a detailed intake and consultation, followed by an acupuncture treatment. It is also customary for the acupuncturist to take your pulse and examine your tongue, as both of these are used as important diagnostic tools.

Upon insertion, you may feel a slight prick as the needle enters the skin, although the needles are so thin that most patients hardly feel them at all. What the patient will typically feel is a sensation of mild heaviness or tingling as the nervous system picks up the stimulation of the needles. Though this may feel a bit weird at first, remember, this is a good thing. This sensation tells both the patient and the acupuncturist that change being elicited in the body.


Heather Bracken, H.H.P., R. Ac.


Book with Heather

Kiera Gadallah, R. Ac


Book with Kiera

Insurance Providers and Benefits:

Contact your insurance provider today to inquire about your acupuncture benefits, always asking whether or not a doctor’s note is required for reimbursement.

What can Acupuncture Treat?

Women’s and Men’s Reproductive Health Issues such as;

  • Pregnancy preparation
  • Miscarriage Prevention/ Maintaining healthy pregnancy
  • Gestational Diabetes
  • Infertility (Irregular Cycle, PCOS, Anovulation, Blocked Fallopian Tubes, etc…)
  • Menstrual cycle irregularities
  • Painful periods
  • PMS symptoms such as irritability, mood swings, breast tenderness, acne, etc…
  • Menopausal Symptoms such as Hot Flashes, Night Sweats, Insomnia, Anxiety, Poor Memory, Low libido
  • Lowered testosterone, low sperm count, motility and morphology

Mental Health Issues:

  • Depression
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Panic Attacks
  • PTSD
  • Postpartum Depression
  • Addictions (Smoking Cessation, Alcohol, Narcotics, Over-Eating, etc…)

Musculoskeletal Disorders:

  • Muscle Tension/ Weakness
  • Back Pain/ Lumbar Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Shoulder Issues including joint inflammation, rotator cuff injuries, shoulder separations, etc…
  • Knee Injuries
  • Sciatica
  • Nerve disorders
  • Joint Pain/ Inflammation
  • Arthritis
  • Fibromyalgia

Common Imbalances such as:

  • Headaches/ Migraines
  • Low Energy
  • Sleeping Disorders
  • Weight Loss/ Reducing Cravings
  • Diabetes
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Cystic Acne
  • Digestive Disorders such as IBS, Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis, ulcers, etc…

Learn More

April’s New Moon in Aries

April’s New Moon in Aries

Hybrid New Moon and Total Eclipse in Aries April 20th, 2023 As this hybrid (second/ double) new moon is the second one we experience in Aries this month, the Aries Vibes are flowing with the vibrant intensity of it’s WARRIOR ENERGY AND FIRE ELEMENT: ...

read more
What you need to know about Nervines

What you need to know about Nervines

Adaptogens may still be having their moment, but the next big thing in Herbal Medicine to be brought to the masses will be NERVINES. For the over-stimulated, coffee-chugging, fast-paced modern World in which we live, there is no better classification of herbs to...

read more
March’s New Moon in Aries

March’s New Moon in Aries

March 21, 2023 Last night’s Spring Equinox, or Ostara as some may call it, wastes no time as she immediately ushers in tonight’s powerful new moon in Aries and the first new moon of our astrological year. While January signifies the start...

read more