The Acupuncture Poll's question for February 2002 was:
"What made you decide to become a licensed acupuncturist or doctor of Oriental medicine?"
Results are as follows:
These results are based upon 389 responses.
As this is a voluntary, non-scientific survey, caution should be used in generalizing the results. Here is a sample of the comments made by those who took the survey and how they voted:
Belief in the healing effects of acupuncture/TCM: As a student of acupuncture being told by various people that the market is flooded and there won't be work for me, the last question seems like one of those release-tension joke questions that a teacher will occasionally put on a test · I do believe in the healing effects of acupuncture and I am optimistic that more and more people in the future will see it as not just a viable alternative, but as an ordinary method of treatment.
Belief in the healing effects of acupuncture/TCM: I started out in dietary counseling and then added shiatsu. I saw that there was more that I needed to know about healing, and acupuncture seemed to be the appropriate path for me.
Belief in the healing effects of acupuncture/TCM: I started as a massage therapist and experienced the subtle yet extremely effective power that touch alone provides. My observations were not fueled by belief but actual observed physiologic change. I also found that touch offered a greater intimacy with my patients' personal experience. Our verbal dialogue and the use of touch combine to reveal the true nature of my patients' condition. Then, through a partnership with my patient, using simple bodywork techniques my patients were able to realize positive change.
I chose to become a TCM practitioner because no other therapy would as fully allow me to build upon this level of patient interaction and success. I am amazed, at this beginning stage of my practice, the depths to which TCM reveals my patients' conditions and the simple yet wise approach it teaches for my patients' care. I sense an indebtedness to this wonderful medical approach for its effectiveness, dignity and wisdom. Thank you for allowing me to comment.
Personal experience as an acupuncture/TCM patient: Aside from the loving ministrations of an aunt, I had never received such close and attentive care as that of an acupuncturist. That was just the beginning of a wonderful journey into this healing art and science.
Personal experience as an acupuncture/TCM patient: My experience and healing as a result of acupuncture and herbs is nothing short of miraculous. I was deeply depressed, in severe pain, and not sure I wanted to go on. I began to feel something with the very first treatment. I was shocked because I have a Western medical background and was extremely skeptical. For six months I drank raw herb decoctions and had acupuncture twice a week while I weaned off numerous medications (with the support of an MD). The symptoms have never returned, but I have treatment often to keep my liver qi flowing smoothly.
Not only do I now have the beginning of a new career but the start of a new life. It's unbelievable to go from not wanting to wake up in the morning to knowing now that if I lived to be 500 years old, I could never learn all the things I want to learn. I guess my message is that no one is hopeless, no matter what is wrong with them. I just hope I can help someone at least a fraction of how I have been helped.
Wanted to make sick people feel better: I studied TCM because of my own personal healing experience with qigong. For more than 10 years, I worked in the Western medical community, and always marveled at the "missing pieces" in healing. I found those pieces through my own healing experiences ... so I chose to study it ... and now I am able to help others. Working with qi is a simple and yet amazingly powerful experience. It gives me the greatest joy to be able to show others how to discover their complete selves ... and how to access their own healing power from within. TCM, to me, is an art form and a science. Because it is subtle and natural, it can reach where other methods cannot. I look forward to many years of happy healing and watching our art of healing blossom and grow into a more mainstream place in health care.
Belief in the healing effects of acupuncture/TCM: I am a nurse, and practiced nursing for 20 years before deciding to pursue a career in acupuncture. So many times, patients would come with complaints, and all the "usual routine tests" would be negative, and their doctors pretty much gave up on them, saying, "We can't find anything wrong." I knew there had to be another way, another answer. I've found that traditional Oriental medicine offers another way of looking at a patient's signs and symptoms, and provides diagnoses and treatment options which Western medicine would never have considered.
For more information on the Acupuncture Poll, contact Acupuncture Today at