How to Choose an Acupuncturist
First of all, you need to see someone you feel an affinity with, who listens to you and makes you feel comfortable. That person should be well trained and experienced. This means someone who is state licensed. Call the person and talk to them. They may only be able to be brief but feel free to ask how long they’ve been in practice and if they’ve successfully treated the condition for which you would be seeking treatment. Feeling you can trust someone is very personal and important. Take the time to seek out the right practitioner. It’s an important relationship.
What is the difference between Traditional Chinese Medicine and Medical Acupuncture?
Medical acupuncture, as practiced by doctors and chiropractors, is a less rigorous in term of its requirements to insert needles. It is an easier way for medical doctors to call themselves acupuncturists. They can begin practicing acupuncture after 300 hours of training. This training however does not address the depth or complexity of Traditional Chinese medicine. However that are some medical doctors and chiropractors who have studied Chinese medicine more rigorously after they have fulfilled minimal requirements for certification.
Becoming a licensed acupuncturist in Texas requires over 3 years of school with one year of internship. By the time I got my degree, I had over 3000 hours of education in Chinese medicine and had successfully passed the National Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology Board Exams (NCCAOM) and fulfilled rigorous requirements for Texas State licensure. Chinese medicine is an extremely complex medical modality that is thousands of years old and takes far more than 300 hours of attention before it is practiced. With over a thousand herbs and hundreds of points, learning how to use them effectively takes years of dedication and experience.
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