With a few sharp taps and a little bit of twisting, Dr. Ming De Yu slid a sterile needle into my forehead.

I could feel it tingle as she found the acupoint and twisted the needle one more time before inserting two more around my nose and two more in my hands.It only hurt a little going in.

Yu practiced acupuncture for 22 years at Guangwai Hospital in Beijing, China, before coming to the United States. She is Utah County's only licensed acupuncturist and one of only 10 in the state.

The biggest difference Yu has noticed between acupuncture in China and in Utah is the way it is accepted. Americans tend to shy away from needles.

Whether you choose the needles or the new needle-less acupuncture, it is all a matter of balance. Acupuncture operates under the philosophy that everything in the universe is connected and that when something is wrong, there is no balance. Everything is either yin or yang.

By stimulating a series of acupoints across the body, Chinese medicinal practitioners believe that balance can be obtained and the patient healed.

The belief is that acupuncture can effectively cure more than 100 diseases and can have an impact on more than 300.

But Americans are still skeptical.

Yu came to America to be with her husband, Xuan Wo Qu, a visiting scholar at Brigham Young University. She realized American people lacked acupunctural services and decided to stay in the United States.

She has a hard time with English, and Qu interprets for his wife.

"Everybody knows in China that acupuncture works," Qu said. "Dr. Yu served more than 50 patients a day in China and barely had time to go to the bathroom. But here, patients call asking for information, and sometimes they come in, sometimes they don't."

Another frustration Yu faces is a Utah law that requires acupuncturists to have another acupuncturist or a practicing physician sign a document agreeing to act as a supervisor the whole time they practice acupuncture.

Tawn Lee, a member of the Utah Acupuncture Association, said the law allows an acupuncturist to be a supervising physician after three years of practice but still requires the life-long supervision.

"I share my office with another acupuncturist, and we supervise each other. The law doesn't really protect the public. If they really wanted to protect the public, the intelligent thing is to have the acupuncturist be in contact with the patient's physician for coordinating better treatment," Lee said.

Other states require only one to three years supervision.

"We are the only profession in the state that is required to be supervised," Lee said.

Acupuncture is a safe procedure. In the past doctors have taught patients how to treat themselves for minor problems.

When I went to Yu, she treated me for complications from a broken nose I received six years ago. The needles were left in for 30 minutes and were twisted every five minutes to give more "needle action."

Depending on the history of the case, eight to 10 treatments can clear up most problems, Yu said.

It all depends how far your yin is from your yang.