Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is the practitioner a medical doctor?
The practitioner here is not an MD (not an allopathic or conventional doctor). Rather he is a licensed "Doctor of Oriental Medicine (D.O.M.) in the state of New Mexico and a licensed acupuncurist (L. Ac.) in the state of Tennessee. This means that he graduated from a nationally accredited post-graduate Masters program and has fulfilled all state and national requirements for licensure to practice acupuncture and herbal medicine in these two states. Our practitioner continues to broaden his knowledge base and expand his clinical skills in health related subjects both inside and outside of the field of Oriental Medicine.
To ensure that you are getting the best available treatment, I would recommend that you choose a licensed acupuncturist/ herbalist. Unlicensed acupuncturists do not receive comprehensive training in Oriental Medicine, including herbology, and therefore cannot responsibly represent or practice Oriental Medicine as a genuinely holistic and integrated medical art and science.
2. Are your services covered by insurance?
The question should be: does insurance take us. At this point, we have not found many health insurance companies in Tennessee that will cover acupuncture. If you would like to contribute to positive change in our national health care system, call your insurance company and tell them you feel strongly that acupuncture should be covered by your insurance plan. The coverage for acupuncture is currently changing across the country, mostly as a result of people like you telling your insurance company that you want it.
It may be important to know that we don't charge anywhere near as much for our services as most medical doctors charge for theirs. Our patients pay for our services out-of-pocket as they are generally affordable for most people. We offer student, senior and package rates at a discount, and we are always willing to work with our patients to make our services affordable. We encourage people not to let finances get in the way of accessing our services.
3. How many treatments will I need to resolve my condition?
This depends on many factors that include but are not limited to: the complexity of a patient's presentation, the history of the patient and the disorder, the severity of the condition, the age and strength of the patient, the capacity and willingness of the patient to implement and adhere to the recommendations, timing, the reaction of the patient to the treatment, etc.
Restoring and maintaining balance is often a slow process. It always takes time for disorders to develop and it always takes time to correct the imbalances and restore health. Traditional medicine does not offer a quick fix to many modern health problems. Its aim is to restore strength and vitality to the individual resulting in a state of balance which does not allow disease. Responsibility for one's own health is gradually earned by the patient as they gain greater awareness of how their own decisions and actions influence their health. Great emphasis is placed on education in the traditional principles of health so that the patient can take care of themselves using the practitioner as a temporary guide towards this end.
We always provide individualized materials and recommendations for each any every patient. We can also teach you skills to help you implement the changes needed to make a positive change in your health.
4. What if I am currently taking nutritional supplements or prescribed medications?
The traditional approach looks at all medications and supplements in the context of the individual and their health concerns. As a person's condition changes, their need for medications and/or supplements may change and will be regularly and carefully reviewed as part of ongoing patient care.
Recommendations can be made for any patient regardless if they are taking prescription meications or dietary supplements, and are always addressed within the context of the individual and the medical models used to guide their treatment. One of the strength of all the traditional medical models is the complementary and integrated use of substances and therapies to support other modalities and to offset side-effects. For example, many prescription drugs have a negative effect on liver function. There are many traditional and modern dietary supplements taht can be used to enhance and improve liver function and consequently can be used with such drugs to minimize any negative effects.
5. Can you help me if I don't live in Knoxville or if I cannot come to your office for regular treatments?
Yes, we work with long-distance patients by providing recommendations and herbal and/or nutritional supplementation to improve health. These may include dietary, lifestyle, and herbal recommendations, as well as suggestions for which hands-on modalities may best help you. These are made only after the completed initial intake paperwork is completed and returned to us and we have met with you in the office or have had a phone consultation with you.
6. Do you treat children?
Yes, we treat infants and children of any age for many different health conditions. As with adults, the modalities are chosen based on the individual child's needs and capacities. However, treatments are usually shorter and if appropriate, a non-insertive needle technique is used to administer acupuncture. Most children enjoy the treatments very much. They are never painful. Parents fill out the initial intake questionnaire either with the child or on the child's behalf.
7. What do I need to do to get an initial appointment?
Contact our office by phone or email and request an initial appointment. We will then schedule your appointment and email or snail mail a copy of our initial intake questionnaire for you to fill out and bring with you to your first appointment. (There is no need to send us your completed intake questionnaire prior to your appointment UNLESS you are a long distance patient and have scheduled your initial intake appointment as a phone consultation.)