Treating Drug and Alcohol Addiction With Auricular Acupuncture

Acupuncture has proven to be helpful in the treatment of drug and alcohol addiction. Acupuncture can assist in the detoxification process by easing the pain of detox as well as help repair physiological damage due to long term drug and alcohol abuse. Chronic abuse of drugs and alcohol can deplete the body of its natural endorphins. Endorphins are the body's feel-good hormone and help the body to manage daily pain and stress. Auricular Acupuncture, the manipulation of the outer ear via needling, cauterizing, massaging or electrical stimulation has proven to increase the body's natural production of endorphins and aid in the alcohol addiction recovery process.

There is historical documentation that auricular treatments were used to treat health conditions in ancient China and Egypt. Medical documentation from 17th century and 18th century Europe lists cauterizing the ear as a viable treatment for sciatica and sexual dysfunctions. While there is historical evidence that auricular acupuncture was used to treat various conditions the techniques were not systematized until a French physician by the name of Dr. Paul Nogier in the early 1950s made an interesting observation. Dr. Paul Nogier noticed a number of his patients had a portion of their ear cauterized by a local healer to treat sciatic pain. This treatment had proven effective and this curiosity fueled the beginnings of Dr Nogier's empirical research into the field of Auriculomedicine.

Dr. Nogier developed his theories and published a book entitled, "The Man in the Ear" where he described the somatotropic relationship between the shape of the ear and the body. Dr. Nogier's somatopic mappings of the homunculus, the man in the ear, an inverted representation of a fetus found in the shape of the outer ear which correlates perfectly with the human body.

Nogier brought his discoveries to his medical colleagues. In February of 1956 Nogier attended the Mediterranean Society of Acupuncture and his work was republished, translated and spread across continents. Nogier's reflex system was spread throughout the Japanese acupuncturist community and was recognized by the Chinese medical authorities. Nogier's work was so respected in China that the Chinese Government awarded him the formal title of "Father of Modern Auricular Therapy". Years later an American doctor, TD Oleson, tested Nogier's work in a clinical experiment. Patients were draped with a sheet, attending physicians had no prior knowledge of patient's medical condition and in 75.2% of these cases the patient was accurately diagnosis by an examination of the ear alone.

Today Auricular Acupuncture has been known to significantly relieve the symptoms of withdrawal from opiates, alcohol and tobacco. Auricular Acupuncture has proven an effective auxiliary treatment for other addictions such as gambling, sex and food addictions. Auricular Acupuncture is reported to increase the production of the body's natural opioid and hormones. Treatment with auricular acupuncture can be used to alleviate the symptoms of withdrawal as well as manage pain and discomfort in order to heal the body and maintain recovery.

For more information on the use holistic treatments for drug and alcohol addiction:

Author bio: Debbie Charlotte discusses about Addiction Treatment Center that offers drug rehab, drug rehabilitation, addiction treatment, rehabilitation residential treatment, addiction recovery treatment and health rejuvenation programs.

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