Hawaii Acupuncture Association

Understanding Traditional Chinese Medicine

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine  


Acupuncture works by stimulating the body’s natural healing abilities.  Very fine disposable needles are placed in specific points along well-defined pathways of the body.  Patients may experience a sense of well-being and relaxation during treatment.
Modern research shows that acupuncture stimulates the release of endorphins, serotonins and other neuro-chemicals that promote circulation and hormonal balance as well as reduce pain and inflammation.

One of the greatest advantages of acupuncture is the absence of undesirable side effects.  Other techniques may includes: Moxibustion (thermal therapy), Acupressure, Cupping (surface vacuum suction for hyperemia), Micro current electrical stimulation  and Herbal medicine.

  Herbal Medicine

Traditional Chinese herbal formulas are as effective now as they were when first introduced more than 2,000 years ago.  Most formulas consist of between two to eighteen different types of herbs. Formulas treat a wide variety of symptoms while invigorate the body’s natural healing process.
Traditional Oriental Medicine is a natural medical system that is used to diagnose and treat illness, prevent disease and improve well-being.It is effective for physical, psychological and emotional problems.

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine originated in China more than 3,000 years ago, has been embraced throughout the world.

Frequently Asked Questions

 Will the needles hurt?

 Most people experience no sensation upon needle insertion.  If sensation is felt, it is described as distension, heaviness or mild ache, nothing more than an ant bite. Some people are more sensitive than others.The acupuncture needles are made of very fine stainless steel with an extremely fine point.  The fineness of the needles allows them to swiftly slip into the tissue easily, without discomfort.

 Are the needles safe?

All acupuncture needles are pre-sterilized and disposable.  Clinics follows guidelines for maximum sanitation and sterilization procedures. These procedures are in accordance with the Hawaii State Department of Health and the Hawaii Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture Association.

When do I feel better?

The response to the acupuncture treatment varies.  Some patients respond with a single treatment while others may take five or more treatments before experiencing change. 

What should I feel after treatment?

After the treatment there may be an increase in energy, a lightness or brilliancy due to the acupuncture stimulation.  In some patients there is a feeling of great relaxation which may be followed by a pleasant drowsiness, which relieves inner tension and improves  blood circulation. 

How many treatments will be need?

In the beginning of care, it may be necessary to treat you daily or several times a week.  After your body starts regulating and gaining function itself, then your treatments will be gradually tapered so that there are longer intervals between treatments.  Many patients choose to stay on a monthly or bi-monthly maintenance/wellness program to check how well their body is keeping its state of balance and to reduce the effects of accumulated daily stress.

Does insurance cover the fee? 

In Hawaii, No-Fault auto accident injuries are covered and Workers’ compensation will cover for acupuncture with a physician’s referral.  Some Union’s health plans such as IBEW-PECA, Mason’s Trust Fund also cover acupuncture. Kaiser and HMAA offer coverage and HMSA offers discounts. Please inquire directly with your insurance company about your coverage.

Commonly Treated Conditions:

     Respiratory Problems

  • Acute sinusitis (pain in the frontal head)
  • Allergic rhinitis (stuffy or runny nose)
  • Common cold
  • Acute bronchitis
  • Bronchial asthma
     Eye, Ear, Nose & Dental Symptoms
  • Allergic conjunctivitis
  • Pseudomyopia (in children)
  • Cataract (early stage without complication)
  • Post-tooth extraction pain
  • Acute / chronic laryngitis
  • Dry eyes syndrome (due to excessive use of PC)
     Digestive Disorders
  • Gastro-esophageal reflux (chronic acid reflux)
  • Abdominal flexure syndrome (gas pain)
  • Constipation / Diarrhea
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
     Neurological Problems
  • Headache (Tension, Migraine)
  • Trigeminal neuralgia
  • Post surgery pain (incl. Post Herpatic neuralgia)
  • Bell’s palsy (most effective within 1 to 3 months)
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)
  • deQuervain’s tendonitis
  • Meniere’s disease (headache & dizziness)
  • Neurogenic bladder dysfunction
  • Tinnitus (ear ringing)
  • Stress control and management of Menopausal disorder, Anxiety, Depression
     Musculoskeletal Disorders
  • Neck and Low back pain (arthritis, sciatica)
  • TMJ syndrome (painful jaw motion)
  • Whiplash injury (auto accident or post traumatic)
  • Sports related Injuries in the limbs (contusion, sprain and strain)
     Dependency Problems

  • Stop smoking and healthy diet consultation

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