My first acupuncture treatment. What should I wear?

What to wear for your first acupuncture treatment? Image Source:

What to wear for your first acupuncture treatment? Image Source:

It's my first acupuncture treatment. What should I wear?

If you are visiting an acupuncturist for the first time it may be difficult to know what to expect and how to dress appropriately for your acupuncture treatment.

We are all faced with sartorial dilemmas daily, so to make this particular one a little easier for you here is what I recommend to patients when they come and visit me at my acupuncture clinics for the first time.

  1. Dress to be comfortable. If this is your first acupuncture treatment, your senses may be heightened focusing on the effect of acupuncture needles on your body. Tight waistbands or pressing clothes and embellishments do not make for comfortable resting. Think princess and the pea.

  2. Wear loose fitting clothing. I will need access to your arms and legs, so it will be helpful if you are able to roll your sleeves/leg trousers above your elbows/knees, pull your top up to uncover your abdomen, or lower the waistband of your trousers. If we are working on a sports injury, I may ask you to bring a pair of shorts to change into.

  3. Are you more of a skinny jeans type of person and your sartorial choices do not permit dress code no2? No problem at all! You will be asked to remove your jeans and given privacy to do so. Large towels or sheets will be used to provide appropriate draping and coverage at all times. After all I want you to feel relaxed, cosy and safe.

  4. No sports bra please. I may ask you to unfasten your bra hooks and lower your straps, but your underwear stays on. However, a sports bra, being a sturdy garment, makes it difficult to access large areas of your back and upper chest.

  5. To shave or not to shave? Girls, boys, gals and lads, please do whatever works for you. Stubbly or silky smooth legs, waxed chests and hairy backs, I have seen it all. Everyone is different and I roll with that, nuff said!

  6. Jewellery and piercings? It is fine to wear jewellery and piercings. You may be asked to remove your watch and bracelets as part of traditional acupuncture is pulse diagnosis where both wrists are held and the quality of your pulse is observed. Also, the wrist area is home to some frequently used acupuncture points.

  7. Make up. Not all treatments require facial acupuncture so feel free to wear make up. If your prescription does require it, I will simply cleanse small areas of your face where the acupuncture needles are inserted.

  8. Fragrance. Yes, whatever makes you feel You.

  9. Hair styling. Wear your hair up or down, so long as you can comfortably lie on your back with your head resting on a pillow. Sometimes during treatment I use massage oils and waxes and your hair may get a little oily. This is typically if I am working on your knotty shoulders and palpating your achy neck. I will use hair clips to pin your hair up if I need to access these areas.

Can you see a theme emerging? I just want you to feel safe and comfortable when I am treating you. Having an acupuncture treatment is a considered choice, and I am very pleased that you have made that decision. Please feel free to get in touch or comment on any other acupuncture treatment conundrums you may have and I will do my best to ponder, answer, update and expand this list. Thank you for reading and here’s to your rejuvenation.

I look forward to meeting you.