People experience acupuncture differently, and rarely do they describe it as ‘painful’. Most people feel no or minimal pain. Unlike needles used for injections, the tip of an acupuncture needle comes smoothly to a point, instead of by way of a sharp edge. Acupuncture needles are also extremely hair-thin—about 20 times thinner than a typical hypodermic needle used for injections. The acupuncture needles are solid and do not remove tissue as would occur with a hypodermic needle, making them safer. Some practitioners also use moxibustion and burn this on the needles during insertion. This is an herb compound that is often used.
In fact, some people are energized by treatment, while others feel relaxed. Improper needle placement, movement of the patient, or a defect in the needle can cause soreness and pain during treatment. This is why it is important to seek treatment from a qualified TCM physician or acupuncturist.