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Have The Best Treatment EVER

You might be wondering, how can I have the best result from my treatments at Heal Grow Thrive Medicine? Acupuncture and massage are special therapies. There is definitely a way to have a greater therapeutic response!


Eat something before you come. A snack right before your session works wonders. Eating something the day of your appointment helps a lot, especially if you tend to feel too dizzy or spaced out afterwards.


Go to the bathroom. There is a continuity to your treatment. Use the bathroom as many times as you like. We recommend doing so before your appointment starts.


What do I wear? People often wonder what they should wear to an acupuncture or massage appointment. Be comfortable. When it's time for your treatment, we'll ask you to get undressed to your level of comfort. You'll get in between the sheets of your treatment table and start relaxing.


What are your priorities? Explain to your practitioner which body area you would like to prioritize. Pointing to the spot and demonstrating the aggravating movement helps.

Get comfortable. When you come in for treatment, you are royalty. Getting you as comfortable as possible will help you drop in to that zen zone that will get you the best results possible. Want more heat? How's that pillow? We have many props and ways to adjust your position to help get you comfortable.


Silence is golden. You will have a different experience if you’re quiet during your appointment. Your practitioner will too. As much as we love chatting with you, it allows us to concentrate on you in a different way when we’re quiet.

Quiet your mind. Getting into parasympathetic mode is the goal. Also, known as “rest & digest”, we want this part of the autonomic nervous system turned on to access our body’s ability to heal. Have a deep rest. Turn off your brain. Personally, I love a nap during acupuncture. If I can’t relax, I use this mantra: “Your only job is to relax.” Breathing exercises and meditation are great as long as the goal is sleep. When my massage therapist gets to a tight, gnarly area, again, I tell myself “relax, relax.” No to-do lists, please!

Speak your mind. We can't read your minds, yet. Please let us know if at any point in time you're uncomfortable for any reason. If your massage therapist is using a technique that makes you tighten up, speak up. Did that needle feel weird? Say so. I know this is hard. You can do this. Here are some words to get you started. Wait. Ow. Hey. Um. A little less/more. I have a question. Is there a way we can do that differently? You get the idea. We want to hear from you!

No pain, no gain? Should massage or acupuncture hurt? It depends. I don't like my massage to hurt, but some people tell me they notice a greater benefit with a stronger massage that "hurts so good". If the goal is pain relief and getting tight muscles to release, it does NOT have to hurt. With acupuncture, generally I find there is a better therapeutic outcome with some needle activation, a funny or weird feeling. That said, some people do better by not feeling the needles at all or with strong sensation.


Make it a rest day. You can think about acupuncture and massage as very specific types of exercise. Even though you're just laying there, your body is doing something. We recommend honoring your body’s healing process and make it a rest day. Gentle exercise like yoga, a walk or easy bike ride are fine.


Soreness. It’s 100% normal to feel sore for a few days after acupuncture and massage. This soreness should feel different from your usual type of pain and similar to how you would feel after a workout. Look for the payoff. You should notice an improvement after the soreness. Either way, let your practitioner know.


Detox. It’s fairly common to have a detox after the first few acupuncture treatments, usually mild nausea for about 30 minutes. Also known as a Herxheimer or Herx Reactions, as your body processes your treatment you may experience flu-like symptoms. This is why your first acupuncture treatment with us will likely be very light and gentle. We need to see how your body will react. Keep that in mind for deep tissue massage. The antidote is water. Epsom salt bath are great too. This detox is important and needs to happen. I prefer a gentle gradual detox. Please be sure to let your practitioner know if you have a post-treatment detox

Marks & bruises. It’s theoretically possible, although uncommon, to get a bruise whenever we put a needle in. This is more common for people who bruise easily. Cupping and gua sha must leave a mark to be therapeutic. Let us know if you have a special event coming up and don’t want your face cupped!


Be aware. You’ll notice that we ask a lot of questions, especially about your response to the treatment. We want to know if what we’re doing is helping you. Please pay attention to your pain numbers and the changes to your pain or symptoms after treatment.

Hydration. Hydrate well the day before and then directly after your appointment. I recommend a quart of water in the two hours following your appointment. Please don’t drink all your water right before your appointment. Electrolytes and lemon water are great!


Get well soon. Friends, that is my wish for you, to have the best treatment EVER. We want to help you on your healing journey in any way we can. We know you're on a unique path that is wholly your responsibility. We want to do our part to help you catalyze the perfect health that is within you, whether we're helping you with pain relief, surgery prep, digestive support, women's health, sleep quality, anxiety & mood, etc. Thank you for preparing the soil of your body to be receptive to the seedlings that are the treatments that we offer you to grow in to the strong tree of renewed health.


~Ileana Bourland, Licensed Acupuncturist

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