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Frequently Asked Questions about Massage & Acupuncture

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What are the benefits of massage and acupuncture?

  • Decreases muscle tension and stiffness
  • Reduces pain
  • Promotes faster healing
  • Relieves stress and aids relaxation
  • Increases joint flexibility and range of motion
  • Strengthens immune system
  • Improves body awareness

Massage therapy is beneficial for muscle, ligament and soft tissue health.

What will happen during my first treatment?

You can fill out the necessary Health History Forms online via the link in your booking confirmation email. Or you may print and fill out the Health History Form on your own time and bring it with you to your initial appointment.

If you don't do the health history form ahead of time, please arrive 10-15 minutes early in order to have time to complete it without being rushed.

Your therapist will take you into the treatment room, where they will ask you questions about your health and goals for treatment, as well as doing any necessary physical assessment.

Your therapist will then leave the room and let you get on the table. During the hands-on portion of your treatment, the therapist will use the techniques they feel will be most effective for you. At all times you are in charge of your treatment. Please feel free to speak up if you would like something different.

After your treatment, your therapist will leave the room so you can get dressed and then they will check in to see how you’re doing, give you some self care, and discuss a treatment plan.

How long should my treatment be?

Your first massage treatment needs to be a minimum of 45 minutes to have time for initial assessment and treatment. If you have more than one issue, a longer treatment may be necessary. Please call or email us if you are unsure of how long the treatment should be. At your first appointment, you can discuss with your therapist how long future treatments should be.

Do I need to get undressed for my treatment?

Undress to your comfort level; some people take everything off, some leave their undergarments on, and some prefer to remain fully clothed. You will be under a sheet at all times with only the areas being treated uncovered. If you choose to remain clothed, please wear light, flexible clothing that is easy to move in. That being said, direct skin contact is ideal for techniques that require the application of oil or lotion.

What should I expect afterwards?

After a massage therapy session, most people feel very relaxed. Depending on the techniques used, there may be some tenderness that lasts a day or two. We will advise you of homecare that will help to decrease any discomfort.

After an acupuncture treatment, an overall sense of well being may be felt, followed by a restful sleep that evening.

Do you do pregnancy massage?

Yes, all of our therapists have been trained in pregnancy massage. We have special cushions that allow most patients to lay face down right up until the end of their pregnancy. If at any time this is uncomfortable, we also have a body pillow so you can lay on your side during the treatment. These cushions can be used during acupuncture treatments also.

Do you bill insurance providers?

We are able to bill most extended health care plans directly. Please confirm that you understand your coverage before coming to your treatment. All plans are different (even within the same insurance provider) and you are responsible for the cost of your treatment if a claim is rejected.

Details to confirm include:

  • If there is a deductible
  • How much coverage you have
  • If you need to do a certain number of treatments before the coverage applies
  • If you need a referral from your doctor

Most of the time we are not able to bill a secondary insurance provider if you are covered by two plans.

Insurers that we may be able to bill directly include:

  • Pacific Blue Cross
  • Medivie Blue Cross
  • Green Shield
  • Canada Life
  • Manulife
  • Sun Life

If your insurer is not listed, please contact us to see if we can bill directly for you.

MSP: If you have premium assistance, you are eligible to have $23 covered for up to 10 treatments combined. We do not bill MSP directly, but can submit your claim online and, if you are eligible, you will receive a cheque for $23 in the mail. It is up to you to do any follow up in regard to the claim.

ICBC, Worksafe/WCB: We do not bill directly.

Do I need a doctor’s referral?

No. Although you don’t need a physician’s referral to visit a massage therapist or acupuncturist, some benefit plans require one to make a claim. Please check with your plan before you book an appointment.

Do I need to have something wrong to get a massage or acupuncture treatment?

No, you don’t need to have a specific problem to visit the clinic. There are physical, mental, and emotional benefits to both massage and acupuncture.

Do I need to always book with the same therapist?

You do not have to book with the same therapist each time. We work as a team, so you can be assured that a different therapist at Renew will have an understanding of your health and be able to continue your treatment.

How often will I need to come?

It is different for everyone. Factors such as how long you’ve had an issue, what your daily activities are, and what your goals for treatment are can all influence how often you may need treatment. We understand that you may have time or financial restrictions and we’ll try to find a treatment plan that works for you. Sometimes only one treatment is necessary, but often it may take more to resolve an issue.

Do I Need to Tip?

No, while tipping is customary in a spa setting, it is not expected nor necessary for health care practitioners in a clinical setting.

What are the education requirements of a Registered Massage Therapist (RMT)?

Registered Massage Therapists have completed a minimum of 2200 hours of government regulated education that includes not only hands on training in assessment and manual techniques, but also knowledge based courses in anatomy and physiology, kinesiology, neurology, and pathology. Once a diploma has been granted, we write provincial exams which must be passed to become registered. We also need to complete continuing education to maintain our registration.
More information at cmtbc.ca

What are the education requirements of a registered acupuncturist (RAc)?

A registered acupuncturist license is obtained after passing the licensing exam for B.C. by the CTCMA (which is the governing body for Traditional Chinese Medicine). To enter a TCM program you must have two years of prerequisite post secondary education. After three years the student would be able to apply to write the registered acupuncture exam. Most TCM programs involve five years of studies.
More information at www.ctcma.bc.ca

Where Can I Find More Information?

We recommend the following websites: