Heidi LaBore Smith

MS, L.Ac., PT


205 W. 2nd St. Suite 502

Duluth, MN 55802


(218) 724-3400

Frequently Asked Questions


How does acupuncture/ Chinese Medicine work?

Sterilized disposal needles (about the size of a human hair) are inserted into specific points on the body. These points activate many normal biological pathways in the body, including the central and peripheral nervous systems, neurotransmitters, hormones, blood components, immune system and musculo-skeletal system. The needles are solid and polished. The rounded edge of the needle pushes the tissue aside, rather than cutting through it.


Does it hurt?

Everyone experiences the needling sensation differently. If any sensation

is felt, it often is compared to a mosquito bite which dissipates quickly.

A mild tingling, known as the “Qi” (pronounced Chee) sensation is obtained.

This is how your energy is engaged in order to balance your particular

disharmonies. Most people fall asleep during treatment, or become

deeply relaxed.


What is the Number of Treatments Needed?

Acupuncture is a process. Several treatment studies show a typical treatment plan will usually consist of six to fifteen treatments over a three to five week period, with an evaluation after the 8th treatment.

For example, if treatment frequency is:

Once per week – may take 40 weeks to heal

Twice per week – may take 16-20 treatments

Three per week – may take 10-12 treatments

Every day for 5 days - may be done at the end of the 5th treatment.

It is recommended that you have 2 more treatments after you are 100% better to stabilize.


How quickly can I expect to feel better?

Several treatment studies show that more than one treatment is needed to resolve the majority of problems. The number of treatments needed will vary from patient to patient, depending on the problem. Typical protocols can be, for example, three times a week for several weeks, or once a week for many months. Each patient responds to acupuncture in their own way. Some people respond more quickly than others, but generally people begin to feel the benefits from acupuncture in 3 - 6 treatments. The more acute / short lived the problem, the fewer treatments are usually needed (1 or 2, 3-5) chronic more stubborn problems may take many treatments to resolve.


How often will I need treatment?





































Our goal is to assist your body’s energy in balancing itself so healing can occur. After your initial visit, we will let you know how often / for how many visits we think you will need to come in. A typical treatment plan will usually consist of six to fifteen treatments over a three to five week period, with a re-evaluation around the 8th treatment. The effects of acupuncture are cumulative - each treatment builds on the one before so you should see gradual changes as you go though a course of treatment.


Do you accept insurance?

No, but we can give you a receipt that includes all pertinent information your insurance company may need to process a claim. This is one of the main reasons we offer Community Acupuncture; the treatment costs are similar to most insurance co-pays, and allow you to get the treatment you need, for as long as you need it.


What conditions can be treated with Chinese medicine?

Although Oriental Medicine has been used for centuries to treat every known medical condition, some of the most commonly treated conditions are as follows:


Addictions / Detox

Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking / Eating


Circulatory Disorders

High (or low) Blood Pressure / Anemia / Headaches (Migraine, tension, sinus, cluster) /

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) / Diabetic Neuropathy


Ear, Nose and Throat

Toothaches/Ear-aches & infections / Allergies / Sinusitis / Tonsillitis


Eye Disorders

Dry Eyes / Excessive watering of eyes


Gastrointestinal Disorders

Indigestion / Stomache ache / Ulcers / Constipation / Diarrhea / Crohn’s Disease / Colitis /

Nausea / Vomiting / Reflux / Hiatal Hernia / Irritable Bowel / Food Allergies


Gynecological / Endocrine Disorders

PMS / Menopausal complaints / Morning Sickness / Mastitis / Vaginitis / Menstrual

Difficulties (painful, irregular, heavy, or absent) / Uterine Fibroids / Fibrocystic Breast

Disease / Endometriosis / Infertility / Diabetes


Neurological Disorders

Stroke / Trigeminal Neuralgia / Numbness / Paralysis / Bell’s Palsy / Tingling / Sciatica


Muscle and Joint Pain

Neck and shoulder Pain / Tendinitis / Bursitis / Back Pain / Arthritis / TMJ / Post-Surgical

Pain / Sports Injuries / Sprains & Strains



Bed wetting / Hyperactivity / ADD



Bronchitis / Asthma / Colds / Flu / Laryngitis / Emphysema


Immune System

Fibromyalgia / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome / Lupus / Multiple Sclerosis / Rheumatoid Arthritis



Depression / Anxiety / Insomnia / Palpitations / Fatigue / Shingles / Compulsive Disorders


Urogenital Disorders

Urinary Tract infections / Incontinence Cystitis / Prostatitis (enlarged or inflamed)

Sexual Dysfunction / Infertility



Why should I come to your clinic, versus somewhere else?

Heidi has 25+ years of experience in acupuncture and has been a licensed physical therapist since 1980. With her unique blend of understanding Western and Eastern medicines, Heidi can explain why your treatment is needed in language that you can understand. Heidi understands that Traditional Chinese Medicine and western medicine compliment each other. Choosing a Licensed Acupuncturist over a Chiropractor or a Medical Doctor for acupuncture is a wise choice: Heidi has completed a 3 year Master’s Degree program in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine with over 2500 hours of additional training. In Minnesota, a Chiropractor can do acupuncture with 100 hours of training and an MD can do acupuncture with NO training.



Pain or symptoms

are a 10 out of 10

-or- you feel that you

are at the end

of your rope.


Pain or Symptoms are

5 out of 10 or greater.


Mild chronic issues



Really long-term

chronic issues




PMS, endometriosis,

menstrual cycle-related

Really long term

chronic issues




Chronic stress


Wellness and prevention





Most other issues




Chronic tinnitus

(ear ringing)


Every day until we see a change






2-3 times a week



(3 months to 1 year) Once a week 6-8 weeks and than re-evaluate


 (1 year to life long) Once per week for 10 weeks, or 2 times a week for 5 weeks, and then re-evaluate


(1 year - life long) Weekly until normal cycle is established, then every other week until 2 good cycles, and then once a month during the week before the symptoms take place


Once a week until stress subsides


Once a week, especially preceding travel, during the change of each season, or at times of higher stress


Once a week until 50% improvement, and then every other week until resolved


Minimum 20 or more treatments, once a week indefinitely