Acupuncture for Long COVID

I have been going to acupuncture once a week for about 2.5 months and it seems to help with my long COVID fatigue.

The acupuncturist I see has over 30 years of experience.

Simply talking to a health professional on a regular basis is useful. She helps me work through symptoms, discuss theories, and offers practical advice.

The measurements in Chinese medicine seem to have no correlation to western measurements, but can still be useful. For example, she said I have a “very thin pulse” and I need to “build my blood,” but all my western blood measurements are fine. She gave me a handout for foods to “build my blood” that included small, regular portions of meat. Before long COVID I was not vegetarian, but I would almost always choose the vegetarian option. I started eating meat, usually chicken, and noticed more energy. (My western doctor also found that my B12 was a little low and B12 only comes from animal products.)

The needles don’t really hurt. She told me if the needle hurts or causes numbness that she hit a nerve, which was not her intention. When that happens she removes the needle and sometimes relocates it. The pain does not persist.

After each appointment sometimes I am more tired and sometimes I have more energy. In general it is a good way to get my body to relax.

I am resistant to taking herbs because they are very lightly regulated, but after complaining of phlegm in my chest for several weeks, she recommended some herbs, which I tried for a few days. The herbs seemed to help clear my lungs and after that I started having more energy, which was a major turning point in my recovery.

An important part of my success with acupuncture is that traveling to and from the appointment was within my energy envelope. If simply showing up triggered PEM, then it would probably not be helpful.

I found acupuncture helpful at treating long COVID fatigue.