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How big are acupuncture needles?
There are a couple different ways that needles are sized. They vary in length and diameter. The most common lengths to use are 1 inch and 1.5 inch; but they may range from .5 inches to 6 inches. The length is only relative to the amount of flesh or tissue that is to be penetrated. For example, if we use points around the thigh or gluteus, we will choose anywhere between 1.5 and 6 inch needles. For points in the tips of the fingers and ears we will commonly use .5 inches.
The diameter can influence the strength by which a point is stimulated. Oddly enough, although a point is stimulated that doesn't mean it's actually felt. Generally, the thicker the needle the stronger the stimulation. 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, and 40 gauge are the common diameters. All of these sizes may be equated to various thicknesses in human hair.