Acupuncture for Kids is Gaining in Popularity

This month’s blog Feature Writer is Stephanie Doerksen, R.Ac.

Many people are surprised by the idea of treating children with acupuncture but it is quickly gaining in popularity for several reasons. The first one is that it’s effective! Acupuncture works just as well for kids as it does for adults and often has even faster results.

The second reason is that acupuncture doesn’t have unwanted side-effects like many Western medications. Several large-scale studies have been conducted in the last ten years on the safety of using acupuncture for children. They have reported no major side effects and shown that minor side effects, such as small bruises or slight tenderness at the acupuncture points, are very rare.

The third reason is that acupuncture is often effective for conditions where Western medicine falls short. Things like anxiety, chronic pain conditions, and digestive disorders.

Here are some of the most common questions parents ask about pediatric acupuncture:

1) How old do kids need to be to receive acupuncture?

Even babies can receive acupuncture. In fact, it’s very effective for conditions such as colic and reflux. For children under 8 years old, the needles are not retained for any length of time. They are inserted and immediately removed. This means that even the wiggliest toddlers can get acupuncture!

2) Does it hurt?

Pediatric acupuncture needles are even thinner than regular acupuncture needles and are virtually painless.

3) What can acupuncture treat?

Kids get acupuncture for:

  • ear aches
  • stomach aches
  • constipation
  • anxiety
  • chronic pain
  • symptoms related to ASD
  • headaches
  • sleep disturbances
  • low immune function

4) What if a child is scared of needles?

That’s ok! Stephanie, our pediatric acupuncturist, uses a variety of treatment techniques including a laser acupuncture pen, acupressure and cupping. Each treatment is customized to a child’s specific condition and also their comfort level.

For more information contact Stephanie at or