3 Patient Objections – Here’s What You Can Say

I am going to go into 3 of the main objections that you’ll come up against and how to overcome them.

When you have the right answer to the right objection, you’ve just made that person that much more likely to become a long-term patient.

Objection Number One:I can’t afford your care.

Many times, when this comes up, people are ill informed about acupuncture and how it can help them. Most people know that it’s great for painful conditions, but few realize it’s far-reaching potential – asthma, allergies, common cold, insomnia, etc…

Here’s what you can say, “Well, I can understand that. These days, many people are feeling a financial pinch. Can you put a dollar figure on your health? Being healthy is the foundation of everything else! If you are having difficulties in paying, we can discuss that and come up with a way to make sure you get the care that you need. I’m committed to helping people in our community reap the benefits that acupuncture can offer them, and I don’t want to see you walking around not feeling well.

You can also respond this way, “You think acupuncture costs too much? How much would you say it should cost?

People will rethink their question and most likely agree that you can’t put a dollar figure on good health.

You can also touch upon all the ways their life will be better when they can: pick up their grandchild, walk longer than a block, sleep through the night, or experience fewer migraine days.

In this way, you are mentioning the “benefits” a person will receive when receiving your care.

Objection Number Two:I’m not feeling any better.

This is a common objection. People expect to experience some BIG shift pretty much right away.

Often people do feel better, but they “forget” about certain symptoms and signs as they improve.

It’s important to set their expectations from the get-go.

So [patients name], I want to let you know that acupuncture is not a magic bullet and I don’t expect you to have some miraculous change from just one treatment. Each treatment builds upon the previous one, with the goal of moving you along the path to optimal health. If you do feel better after this treatment, great, then I know that acupuncture may be very helpful for what’s going on. But, normally it takes a few treatments to witness lasting improvement.

This lays down the foundation that care is a process and minimizes their “I should be better already” expectations.

When you do come across this objection, here’s one way to go about addressing it:

I understand that you are not happy with your progress so far. I need to let you know that your [s/s] did not just happen overnight. It slowly got worse over time, and it’s likely that there was [weakness, problem, etc…] for years, and it just took [X] to make it worse and show up. The truth is that it is going to take some time. I mentioned at the first visit, that acupuncture was not a magic bullet and that each treatment is building upon the last. It may take a little more time to correct the imbalance. Let’s get you in for a reevaluation and see what else we can do.

Objection Number Three:I was hurting more when I left here.

Well, it happens.

Patients leave and they sometimes feel worse.

Here’s one way to address their concern. “I’m sorry to hear that your [s/s] has gotten worse. Change is seldom easy. From time-to-time some patients do experience an exacerbation of their symptoms. Most of the time is it due to the body readjusting and rebalancing itself. Sometimes things can get a little worse before they get better. It’s not uncommon. Why don’t we get you in a [reevaluation or another visit] and see how I can best help you.

Your [s/s] can get worse after a treatment [if you haven’t been in for a while, when you do too much, too soon and if you miss appointments]. You have to remember that you’ve been having [s/s] for [length of time with their problem] and things haven’t been working properly. Why don’t we get you in a [reevaluation or another visit] and see how I can best help you.

When you begin an exercise program after years of non-activity, you are usually going to feel achy for a few days after your first workout? Maybe a bit sore? The body responds this way to healing change as well, and it’s a sign that things are shifting. We will, however, monitor your progress and if we have a concern other than this we will certainly let you know. In the mean time be patient: You are moving in the right direction.

There are MANY MANY more objections.

These are the tops ones that I wanted to share with you.

Leave your comments and let me know what objections you have had and how you overcame them.

Stay well, positive and loving this fall!





  • penny

    October 21, 2013

    Hi Jeffrey

    I know you have been sending me lots of different emails and sorry – I just havent had much time to read some of them – and I do like your publications but found them a bit too expensive for me but I really appreciate your common sense and your up-beat confidence in giving other practitioners hope and confidence in their work. SO many thanks for your emails I have taken a lot of good advice from them.

    Best wishes

    • Jeffrey

      October 21, 2013

      Of course Penny! I love what I do and I think the acupuncture community could use a little marketing qi infusion! 🙂

  • Jason

    October 21, 2013

    A good technique that I picked up in sales was to always take the objection and turn it into the exact reason they need your service.

    I cant afford it- I’m glad you said something because we have payment programs set up for our patients!

    • Jeffrey

      October 21, 2013

      Thanks Jason, I love hearing from the experience of other practitioners.

  • Allison

    October 23, 2013

    what type of payment options do you offer??

    • Jeffrey

      October 29, 2013

      We offer various payment options. It depends upon what you are looking for.