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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

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Well, this is the big question, isn’t it? According to the latest research, TCM has proven able to provide an improvement in quality of life for patients with chronic illnesses, and in resolving acute pain-related injuries. Of course, we welcome and encourage you to continue doing your own research on the topic to draw your own conclusions.

Western medicine takes a rigid, standards-based approach to healthcare. For example, two people coming in for the same illness will likely receive the same or similar treatment, barring conditions like allergies/intolerance, past medical history, etc.

Traditional Chinese Medicine is a holistic practice that takes a big-picture view of your entire body and all the different factors that affect you in your daily life, including diet, emotions, environmental factors, etc. As such, two people coming in for the same illness might receive two different courses of treatment, depending on the unique conditions and constitutions of their bodies, the unique combinations of factors acting on each of them, and the underlying cause of their illnesses.

Most major insurance providers do now cover services that fall under the umbrella of “acupuncture” — this includes cupping, due to its basis in acupuncture points and meridians. Herbal therapy, however, does not fall under this umbrella and is therefore not covered. For specific details about how much coverage you’re eligible for under your policy, you’ll want to get in touch with your insurance provider.

TCC is able to bill directly to most major insurance providers, but some policies don’t allow us to submit claims on your behalf. Be sure to double-check what your own coverage allows.

Yes, there are a few things:

  • Please eat before your appointment. For Acupuncture treatments, it’s generally recommended that you do not start your session on an empty stomach unless otherwise instructed by your practitioner.
  • Please bring your insurance information if you have coverage and would like us to bill your insurance provider directly. (Note: some plans might not allow us to submit claims on your behalf; check your coverage details to confirm.)
  • Please bring (or compile a list of) any prescription medications or supplements you are currently taking so we can better understand your condition.
    Oh, and one more thing: we’ll have some intake forms for you that’ll take a short while to fill out, so we recommend that you arrive about 15 minutes early so you can complete those and still leave enough time for your practitioner to review your information before they see you.
We recommend that you avoid wearing tight or constrictive clothing — acupuncture points can be found all over the body, and you never know which ones your practitioner will need to be able to access during treatment (with your consent, of course). We do have medical gowns here at the clinic though, so your practitioner might ask you to change into one if necessary.

Don't forget we can bill directly!

We’re happy to offer direct billing through TELUS Health eClaims. Find out if your insurance provider is connected.

To put it simply, acupuncture is the use of needles to stimulate and/or manipulate energy flow in the body through specific points on the body known as acupuncture points. Your practitioner chooses which points to use based on a few things, including the specific ailment you’re looking to have healed and the unique condition of your body as determined through their diagnosis.

We’ve prepared more in-depth information on acupuncture for you here, but we also encourage you to do your own research on the topic! There is a wealth of knowledge to be discovered — thousands of years worth, in fact!

Not usually! The needles themselves are much thinner than a typical syringe, and are virtually painless when inserted. During treatment, you may feel a dull tenderness or heaviness with the insertion of the needle — this is a normal reaction called de qi, and is a good indicator that the correct points have been selected.
In some cases, your practitioner may need to gently twist or move the needle to provide stronger stimulation to the acupuncture point, which will likely cause a brief moment of pain or discomfort. If this is something you’d rather avoid, let your practitioner know! It’s always best to be open and honest with them — they’re here to help you, and the more information you give them, the better they’ll be able to take care of you.

Your practitioner is here for you. If this is a concern, definitely start a conversation with them about it during the consultation/diagnosis portion of your appointment.

Acupuncture is generally recognized as a safe procedure when performed by a trained acupuncturist. Some minor side effects can include bruising, dizziness, or sensations reminiscent of electricity. If you experience any of these symptoms during treatment, let your practitioner know right away so they can see if adjustments need to be made.

The effectiveness of acupuncture can vary depending on the disease and your history with the illness. Some treatments will yield results within the same session; but for chronic or more complex illnesses, frequent treatments may be necessary.

To book your appointment, click the Book Online button at the top-right of the page (if you’re on your phone or tablet, you’ll find it under the three-lined Menu). We look forward to seeing you!

Chinese herbal therapy is a system of natural healing that has gone through thousands of years of study and practice by generations of Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners, and has benefitted billions of people in that time. Using herbal therapy, your practitioner can treat the root cause of your illness—and may even able to address multiple problems at once—by taking advantage of the medicinal properties of an enormous catalogue of naturally-derived materials and the interactions between them.

To find out more about herbal therapy and how our state-of-the-art herbal dispensary can help you, just click/tap that “Find out more…” button.

Short answer: possibly. Taste will vary, of course, depending on the ingredients in the formula you’re getting, and some do taste stronger than others. However, any herbal medicine you get from our dispensary will be in the form of water-soluble granules, which taste far less severe than traditional raw herbs. If you still can’t stand the flavour, feel free to ask about our pill or capsule options!

Anything you consume can carry the risk of interacting negatively with something else in your body — for example, something as simple and every-day as garlic can increase the risk of bleeding if consumed alongside blood-thinning drugs. That’s why it’s important that you give your practitioner as much information as possible — they need to know about all of your medications, supplements, allergies, dietary restrictions, etc. so they can tailor their herbal formula to you and avoid any unintended side effects.

The effectiveness of herbal therapy can vary depending on the disease and your history with the illness. For acute illnesses like the common cold, you might see improvement within 1-2 days of taking your prescribed formula. For chronic conditions, the process might take several weeks or more, and will likely involve regular check-ins with your practitioner to re-assess and adjust your formula as your condition changes.

To book your appointment, click the Book Online button at the top-right of the page (if you’re on your phone or tablet, you’ll find it under the three-lined Menu). We look forward to seeing you!

Next to acupuncture, cupping has probably become one of the most widely recognized and commonly asked-about modalities of TCM in North America, thanks to gold-medal swimmer Michael Phelps and those iconic circular marks that debuted on his body at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Put simply, cupping uses suction to draw stagnated energies out from within the body and up towards the surface of the skin, where they can be flushed out naturally by your immune system. In North America, this modality is commonly used to treat pain and tightness in the muscles, and is often sought out by athletes like Phelps to help with post-training recovery and other sports-related issues.

There are a wide range of illnesses that can also be treated by cupping in addition to those listed above. To see the list and for a more in-depth information, just click/tap that “Find out more…” button. We also encourage you to do your own research, if you’re interested — there’s literally thousands of years of knowledge to be found!

They may look a bit intimidating because of how prominent they are, but they’re basically just bruises! The suction generated by the cups draws blood to the surface of the skin along with all kinds of unwanted toxins, such as static blood, lymph, and pathogenic factors.

It doesn’t hurt, per se, but because of the strength of the vacuum generated by the cups, it can be a unique and intense sensation, especially if it’s your first time.

Not unless those circular bruises count as a risk! It’s generally agreed that cupping is very safe and will not usually cause any serious problems, with side effects limited to the pinch experienced at the moment of suction.
The effectiveness of your cupping treatment can vary depending on the disease being treated and your history with the illness. Some treatments will yield results within the same session; but for chronic or more complex illnesses, frequent treatments may be necessary.

To book your appointment, click the Book Online button at the top-right of the page (if you’re on your phone or tablet, you’ll find it under the three-lined Menu). We look forward to seeing you!

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