Your Health and Safety

Code of Safe Practice and Conduct

All members of the British Acupuncture Council are bound by a strict Code of Safe Practice and Ethics and are covered by full Medical Malpractice & Public/Products Liability Insurance. Access these codes directly by visiting Health, Safety and Professional Conduct on the BAcC´s website.

Health and Safety

Acupuncture is extremely safe with very few side effects and rarely any undesirable ones; none of them are long-term or harmful. Indeed most people leave the clinic with some immediate alleviation of symptoms and a generalised sense of wellbeing. In some instances symptoms may initially worsen, but this is an exception rather than the rule. If a patient is extremely run down before embarking upon a course of treatment, then they may find that they feel initially more tired, but this is a short-term phenomena and the prolonged course of treatment will generate an increase in vitality. Nowadays people live such busy lives and it is only when they stop to rest on the acupuncture couch, that they realise just how tired that actually are. Thus when feelings of relaxation are encountered for the first time in a while, an individual may state that they feel tired during or after treatment.

People sometimes ask why they don't bleed when the needles are withdrawn. This is achieved because the needles are both strategically placed and are of the highest quality, polished surgical steel; they are inserted away from any significant blood vessels. Nevertheless whilst great care is taken to avoid bleeding or bruising during or after treatment, there are instances where this might occur, although this is usually the product of tearing of fine capillaries. It is more likely to happen in areas where the capillaries are more abundant and less likely to occur in more fleshy areas of the body. In addition it might occur more frequently in those people who naturally bruise more easily, or in those who unconsciously tense in the area of needle insertion. However, bruising and bleeding is relatively rare and prospective patients need to be assured that should it do so, it is a short lived phenomenon and will not undermine the efficacy of treatment.

In very rare circumstances, patients have encountered what is termed as, 'needle shock', where an individual experiences feelings similar to any shock and include feelings of coldness, shivering, light-headedness and nausea. However this is normally the product of strong needle techniques that are rarely employed at the Iffley Acupuncture Clinic, or because of other extraneous personal circumstances. For example, should there be concurrent emotional turmoil or upset, then this undoubtedly will affect treatment and how a person feels during and afterwards. Although it should be stressed, that acupuncture is used effectively to calm a troubled mind and aid resolution in emotional difficulties and many seek acupuncture for these very reasons. Similarly, if someone has eaten before treatment, or not eaten for some considerable time before, then this can undermine the conditions.