What is an Acupuncturist?

An acupuncturist is someone who uses the ancient Chinese healing art of acupuncture, which has been practiced for thousands of years, to help treat people and make them feel better.

People think acupuncture is all about sticking needles into someone (and it’s true that this is a big part of it) but there’s more to it than that. Acupuncture is rooted in traditional Oriental Medicine which views perfect health as a state of balance. Disease and illness are caused when the Qi, or vital energy of the body, is out of balance. Stimulating certain points on the body is said to correct this imbalance, helping to reduce pain and make the body well again.

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What does an Acupuncturist do?

The role of an Acupuncturist usually includes:

  • Inspecting the patient for signs of ill health (which may include looking at their tongue)
  • Listening to the patient’s voice and breathing for signs of ill health
  • Feeling key points on the patient (the pulse, abdomen and various points on the body known as meridians)
  • Asking questions to find out more about a person’s medical history
  • Treating the patient by inserting needles into key points on the body to get the energy flowing in a way that will help restore balance. Treatment can also include massage and a range of other techniques.
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How much could I earn?

Average salary


Example: Health associate professionals n.e.c., 2013

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How to become an Acupuncturist

To get started as an acupuncturist, you will need:

  • The right skills and qualities (like compassion, an interest in people and a trustworthy approach)
  • The right education (a qualification that shows you’re an approved acupuncturist)
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