Acupuncture (credit: Katy Winn/Getty Images)

Even if it is your first time trying acupuncture, you’ll want to give it a go at a professional, licensed practitioner who receives top marks from clients. Two community centers in the city, a fertility expert, a Peninsula facility and one in Oakland, are well worth your consideration. Ask around, check your insurance details, speak with these practitioners and others to make an informed decision about what’s best for you.

San Francisco Community Acupuncture
220 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 675-8973
www.missionsfca.com

This community acupuncture center near Dubuce operates on a sliding scale fee structure to make acupuncture accessible to a wider audience and to make weekly visits more affordable. Treatments are by appointment in a quiet group setting for up to four people. A first visit is $40-60 and further treatments are $25-45. There are some tips to know before you go: private visits are on request, as well as massages. They’re open seven days a week and are staffed with Spanish-speaking practitioners on certain days. Credit cards are accepted (insurance is not) and a Chinese herbal pharmacy is on the premises.

Blue Ova Health
1414 Castro St.
San Francisco, CA 94114
(415) 795-3900
www.blueova.com

Established in 2014 by a sister-sister team, Blue Ova Health is an integrative health center offering acupuncture, massage, nutrition and mind-body coaching with a speciality on women’s health services including fertility, pregnancy and postnatal care. Co-founder Robin Sheared has been voted among the top five acupuncturists in San Francisco by people’s choice in the Bay Area A-List since 2011. Blue Ova describes their philosophy as rooted in traditional Chinese medicine yet integrated with Western medical care, helping patients to engage their own body’s innate healing ability.

Circle Community Acupuncture
1351 Harrison St.
San Francisco, CA 94103

This SoMa center is community-run, collecting a pay-as-you-can fee on a sliding scale from $15 to $35, making acupuncture more affordable, especially for those without insurance coverage for treatment. The first visit is $10, at which time paperwork is completed.The center has a cadre of fans and loyal friends. It’s simple to schedule an appointment online and come in for acupuncture in small groups while seated in comfortable recliners. Shiatsu massage has recently been added as a treatment.

Temescal Acupuncture Center
330 41st St.
Oakland, CA 94609
(510) 654-7054
www.temescalacupuncture.com

Winner of the 2015 Bay Area A-List for acupuncture, Temescal Acupuncture Center is a group of several highly experienced professional holistic practitioners under one roof, each maintaining their individual practices. Read about each of the practitioners’ specialties on the website, including acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, classical homeopathy and therapeutic massage. The emphasis is on “slow health,” and creating and maintaining the balance that is at the core of holistic medicine.

Many Lives Chinese Medicine
499 Seaport Court, Suite 101
Redwood City, CA
(650) 366-4299
www.manylivescm.com

The practitioners at Many Lives Chinese Medicine believe that acupuncture can naturally alleviate a long list of conditions: gastrointestinal, neurological, ear/nose/throat, respiratory, emotional, sports injuries, musculoskeletal, gynecological and fertility. They have been helping patients for more than 15 years and were selected as a top 10 finalist based on voters for best acupuncturist in the 2015 Bay Area A-List. Ask about the Thursday evening weekly group clinic.

Laurie Jo Miller Farr loves walkable cities. A tourism industry professional and transplanted New Yorker by way of half-a-lifetime in London, she’s writing about the best of the bay and beyond for Bay City Guide, AXS, Examiner and more. Examiner.com.