One thing to look for is if the acupuncturist has the Dipl.Ac. NCCAOM (National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) certification. The NCCAOM is a certification held by most licensed acupuncturists. The ACAOM (American College of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) is another certification to look for. Find out many hours of training/schooling an acupuncturist has had before you make a choice.
Within Chinese medicine, there are many different types of acupuncture . Most people are not aware of the hours of schooling that a licensed acupuncturist should have before providing acupuncture treatment. There are other licensed health care professionals who perform acupuncture that do not have the full training and credentials that a fully-trained acupuncturist should have. Some health care professionals performing acupuncture have as few as 25 hours of training in the use of acupuncture needles. Acupuncture should not be performed by someone who does not read the wrist pulses and/or do a tongue diagnosis, which helps them determine where the imbalances in your body are and, thus, what acupuncture points to use in treating your health issues. “Dry Needling” is not “Acupuncture.”
If someone is seeking acupuncture for a condition of pain that you do not know the cause of, and acupuncture is used to remove the pain and if there is a more serious, underlying disease process going on that was causing the pain, that condition could continue to get worse and you may not know it because the acupuncture removed your pain without addressing the cause.
Ask for a free consultation to meet the acupuncturist. After all, before making this investment of time and money for your health, you should feel comfortable with who you are going to be working with on your path to health.