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What to Expect After Acupuncture

Acupuncture is part of ancient Chinese medicine that involves insertion of very thin needles at specific points in your body. The ancient Chinese argued that energy flow within our bodies follows specific pathways usually known as meridians. They believed that due to overuse, misuse and disuse of certain areas of bodies during the normal daily lives, this energy flow is altered, thereby leading to several health issues.

Insertion of needles in such areas reroutes the flow of energy to the normal pathways, hence relief from our symptoms. In the modern day medicine, it is sort after for holistic wellness that includes stress management among many others.

Its effects are different from one person to another. This article demystifies some of the most common strange yet beneficial things that happen after acupuncture.

Acupuncture is a popular way to heal your body

Muscle Twitching

Some people claim to experience some light twitching of muscles, especially in the target areas. When needles are inserted into areas with strained muscles such as legs, back, and arms, they experience increased flow of blood and materials. After insertion of needles in an area with very strained or rigid muscles, flow of blood resumes almost immediately, thereby releasing the rigidity. This release causes some little muscle movements known as twitching. This feeling could also be as a response to the little sensation of imaginary needles even after actual needles have been removed from your body.

Relaxed and Sleepy

As mentioned above, its main effect is that it causes a mix up of things in our bodies. Since some of us are so busy and caught up with activities at work, we never get to listen to our bodies. However, with a little stir of things during the procedure, the body often regains the much needed relaxation and calmness. When this happens, do not fight the feeling; instead, let yourself get absorbed into the feeling and you will be surprised at how better you will feel afterwards.


Soreness is one of the most common things to expect after an acupuncture session. This is because upon insertion of the needles, blood tends to come close to the surface of the skin on the target areas. Accumulation of blood on the target areas leaves some soreness. Good news is that the soreness is not as painful and only lasts for a day or two after the session. To minimize the chances and level of soreness, you are advised to seek services of a licensed and highly experienced acupuncturist. This is because the wrong insertion technique could lead to increased and more severe sores.


Some acupuncture patients have reported feelings of heavy fatigue after their session. This is explained by the fact that needling tends to trigger parasympathetic response in the nervous system. This response leads to replacement of the stress hormone, cortisol with happiness hormone dopamine. Upon the release of the happy hormone, the body goes into extreme relaxation that leads to increased fatigue and light-headedness. This is a sign that the treatment is working for you.


As aforementioned, this procedure leads to a mix up of different things. During our normal up and down of our busy schedules, we often tend to ignore our emotions, most probably because the stress hormone is high. However, with acupuncture, cortisol is replaced with dopamine, which tends to release the body of its heaviness. It is after this that you start to notice how much load you have been carrying in your heart. Therefore, it is very much okay and normal to experience a surge in emotions. Some people might cry while some might even let it off their chest. When this happens, do not be embarrassed, instead, dive into the feelings to experience maximum healing from stress.

Alertness and Sensitivity

The initial idea behind acupuncture is to strike a balance between physical and physiological processes within the body. It is only after achieving this balance that someone experiences healing from their symptoms. In the course of finding this balance, you start being aware of some things you did not know exist in your body. This explains the feelings of more rejuvenation, energized, alertness and energy outburst after a session.

Acupuncture should not be performed on pregnant women, people with heart complications including those wearing pacemakers. Even for people with normal health, it should be accompanied by professional advice from your physical therapist. To make the most out of a session, one should look for only licensed and highly experienced therapist. This is the only way you can be safe from severe side effects.