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What Do Acupuncturist Do?

Occupation Description Provide treatment of symptoms and disorders using needles and small electrical currents. May provide massage treatment. May also provide preventive treatments.

Life As an Acupuncturist: What Do They Do?

  • Treat medical conditions using techniques such as acupressure, shiatsu, or tuina.
  • Maintain detailed and complete records of health care plans and prognoses.
  • Apply heat or cold therapy to patients using materials such as heat pads, hydrocollator packs, warm compresses, cold compresses, heat lamps, or vapor coolants.
  • Insert needles to provide acupuncture treatment.
  • Adhere to local, state and federal laws, regulations and statutes.
  • Collect medical histories and general health and life style information from patients.

What Skills Do You Need to Work as an Acupuncturist?

These are the skills Acupuncturists say are the most useful in their careers:

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

  • Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner
  • Auricular Therapist
  • Clinic Supervisor
  • Acupuncture Physician
  • Naturopathic Physician

Job Outlook for Acupuncturists

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 56,400 jobs in the United States for Acupuncturist. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 13.3% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 7,500 new jobs for Acupuncturist by 2026. There will be an estimated 3,800 positions for Acupuncturist per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Acupuncturists in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Acupuncturist are Colorado, Oregon, and Nevada. Watch out if you plan on working in Wyoming, South Dakota, or Mississippi. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Acupuncturist Salary

Acupuncturists make between $40,910 and $141,330 a year.

Salary Ranges for Acupuncturists

Acupuncturists who work in Maryland, District of Columbia, or Georgia, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Acupuncturists in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $75,360
Alaska $74,750
Arizona $70,780
California $74,080
Colorado $61,630
Connecticut $79,750
Delaware $87,300
District of Columbia $122,830
Florida $66,660
Georgia $107,530
Hawaii $76,650
Idaho $59,640
Illinois $67,600
Indiana $61,420
Kansas $72,840
Kentucky $60,670
Louisiana $104,930
Maine $79,090
Maryland $126,550
Massachusetts $88,290
Michigan $78,210
Minnesota $86,010
Mississippi $67,310
Missouri $68,600
Montana $73,070
Nebraska $51,310
Nevada $52,800
New Hampshire $72,400
New Jersey $89,220
New Mexico $70,490
New York $77,400
North Carolina $92,950
North Dakota $48,300
Ohio $84,760
Oklahoma $72,510
Oregon $83,430
Pennsylvania $77,950
Rhode Island $79,950
South Carolina $72,050
South Dakota $63,640
Tennessee $59,990
Texas $70,270
Utah $74,310
Vermont $83,520
Virginia $86,250
Washington $89,590
West Virginia $64,840
Wisconsin $75,260

What Tools & Technology do Acupuncturists Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Acupuncturists may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Word processing software
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Electronic health record EHR software

How do I Become an Acupuncturist?

Individuals working as an Acupuncturist have obtained the following education levels:

Acupuncturist Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become an Acupuncturist?

Acupuncturist Work Experience

Who Employs Acupuncturists?

Acupuncturist Sectors

The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

Acupuncturist Industries

Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those who work as an Acupuncturist sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:


Image Credit: Aphiwat chuangchoem via Creative Commons Zero (CC0)

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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