I love acupuncture.
I was reminded of this fact after visiting Little Needles yesterday afternoon. I don’t know exactly how acupuncture works, only that it does. Somehow getting stuck with little needles and just vegging out for a bit helps shift things energetically. I don’t usually think about acupuncture that much–unless something is wrong. Stress from work? Acupuncture. Nursing a weightlifting or Brazilian jiu jitsu injury? Acupuncture. Cramps? Acupuncture. Insomnia? Acupuncture. I’m sure you get the drift.
Acupuncture is certainly not a cure-all. At some point I’ve always needed to address the root of an issue. But it does help shift and move things. It does get to a place where I can make smart and strategic decisions. Along with other therapies), it helps me let go of things that no longer serve me. And it helps me work through the ongoing turmoil as all these changes are taking place.
The only problem? Affordability. Some acupuncturists charge anywhere from $60-75 a session! This isn’t to say that they don’t deserve every penny. Acupuncture school ain’t cheap and besides, how much is your health and sanity worth? However, the cost does make it somewhat inaccessible for many to get the treatment they need–especially if weekly sessions are indicated.
Luckily, a new model is spreading like wildfire. Community acupuncture costs only $15-40 per session (with a $10 paperwork fee for your first session). The sliding scale is awesome. No income verification is necessary, so you can decide what you can afford–enabling you to get the amount of treatment that you need. (Eternally grateful for countless $15 sessions I received in Tucson and Portland when I really needed them, I always try to pay as high on the sliding scale as I can.)
How do they keep the sessions so affordable? Because they can treat many people at once. Similar to traditional acupuncture treatments in Asian countries, community acupuncture takes place in a group setting. Rather than laying down in a treatment table, you get to relax in a recliner in a community room, along with others who are also getting treated at the same time. The acupuncture points are restricted to distal points below the knee and elbow and on the head, making treatment in a community setting possible.
I hear from many people who are eager to try acupuncture but just can’t afford it, so here’s your chance. For more information, check out this fascinating article in Yes Magazine. Or go to the Community Acupuncture Network to find a clinic near you.
And if you’ve had your own experiences with community acupuncture (or acupuncture in general), leave your thoughts in the comments!