How Many Sessions Will It Take?

My patients always ask me, “Gabriel how often should I come see you for acupuncture? I love hanging out with you, you’re so so funny, (like Chris Farley funny), very very smart (like Mensa level), extremely handsome (like Lionel Richie handsome), and you have Tracy Chapman on repeat in the waiting, area. So please Gabriel tell me, how much acupuncture do I need?”

The answer is, there is no perfect answer. As an example, I’ll tell you about a patient I saw this week who we’ll call David Wamscam - my completely made up childhood best friend that I invented so I didn’t have to admit to my family that I still hadn’t made any friends at my new school. Of course my awesome brother suggested we should look him up in the class phone book. Jerk!! Don’t worry he apologized and I’m over it now. Anyway, so “David” came in this week complaining of back pain. We talked for a bit, I looked at his tongue and felt his pulse, and realized there was a lot more going on than just a sore back. Of course I wanted to treat his back pain, but when we spoke I learned his stomach was really bothering him, he wasn’t sleeping well, and what I saw on his tongue and felt through his pulse (serious emotional distress) told me that he needed treatment for more than just back pain. So while David likely thought he would come in for just a couple of treatments, he really needs way more than that. Think of yourself as a seesaw (totally illegal in all playgrounds now). Work, poor diet, stressful relationships, crazy families (what up Thanksgiving and Chanukah/Christmas) make our system imbalanced. Our minds and bodies are in a constant fight to stay balanced. Acupuncture and herbs level out the seesaw and prevent you from feeling like this.

Chinese Medicine is a way of life. We could all use acupuncture 1-2 times a week. We all live with stress, frustration and the pressures of our daily existence. We eat out way too much, we take pharmaceuticals as a band-aid for our ailments and we go go go until we can’t go anymore. Getting acupuncture is essential to making your body healthy and balanced. If a patient comes to see me with an acute problem I always say, “Give me 2-3 treatments and I will make you feel better.” This is true,but the key to getting the most out of Chinese medicine is using it preventively. Traditional medicine is reactive – most people only go to the doctor when they are already sick or in pain, but to get the most out of Chinese medicine you need to truly embrace a different mindset – that to keep your body healthy and in balance takes regular care and maintenance.

You need to experience acupuncture to truly appreciate what the needles do. If you treat acupuncture as an irrelevant once in awhile treatment it will help you in the short term but it won’t have the lasting effects that will keep you feeling your best. If you’d like to set up an appointment with Gabriel, please call (212) 473-3750 or email