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What Do Acupuncturist Do?

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

Acupuncturist Responsibilities

  • Treat patients using tools such as needles, cups, ear balls, seeds, pellets, or nutritional supplements.
  • Insert needles to provide acupuncture treatment.
  • Develop individual treatment plans and strategies.
  • Formulate herbal preparations to treat conditions considering herbal properties such as taste, toxicity, effects of preparation, contraindications, and incompatibilities.
  • Treat medical conditions using techniques such as acupressure, shiatsu, or tuina.
  • Consider Western medical procedures in health assessment, health care team communication, and care referrals.

Things an Acupuncturist Should Know How to Do

When polled, Acupuncturists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

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.

  • Herbalist
  • Acupuncture Doctor
  • Auricular Acupuncturist
  • Acupuncture Physician
  • Auricular Detoxification Specialist

Is There Going to be Demand 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. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 3,800 job openings in this field each year.


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.

Do Acupuncturists Make A Lot Of Money?

The average yearly salary of an Acupuncturist ranges between $40,910 and $141,330.


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

How much do Acupuncturists make in each U.S. state?

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?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Acupuncturists:

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

How do I Become an Acupuncturist?

Learn what Acupuncturist education requirements there are.


How Long Does it Take to Become an Acupuncturist?


Where Acupuncturists Work


The table below shows the approximate number of Acupuncturists employed by various industries.


You May Also Be Interested In…

Career changers with experience as an Acupuncturist sometimes find work in one of the following fields:


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

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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