Auricular (Ear) Acupuncture
It is possible to relieve pain in any part of the body by using points on the skin of the auricle (external ear). Ear acupuncture or auricular therapy can be used for many conditions, including addiction treatment, mood disorders, obesity and pain among other. Many people react with surprise when advised that ear acupuncture can be used for their body complaint. For many it can take a while to believe that a pain they may have been suffering for several weeks or months can disappear just after a few seconds with a few tiny needles in the ear.
Auricular therapy is based on the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Just as this ancient healing art defines acupuncture points on the body for treatment of various conditions, similar points are defined on the ear. Recently, ear acupuncture has been shown to stimulate the release of endorphins, the body's own feel-good chemicals.
In the 1950s, Dr. Paul Nogier of Lyon, France, expanded the original Chinese charts into a more comprehensive system. Dr. Nogier's work demonstrated the ear is actually a micro-map of the entire body, with all body parts represented as shown in the diagrams below. Thus, all parts of the body can be evaluated and treated by means of the external ear.
Dr. Nogier developed a map of the ear based upon the inverted foetus concept, when he observed scars on the ears of patients who were successfully treated for sciatic pain by French traditional healers, using hot nails on the ear.
Ear acupuncture points can be detected by the level of micro-electrical conductivity, which is observed using a point locator. Once the point is identified, a fine needle can be inserted in the specific area. Points may be stimulated for a longer period of time and without the use of needles by using ear seeds.
Ear seeds are small seeds from the Vaccaria plant. These seeds are held in place on the ear with a small piece of adhesive tape. Ear seeds may be left in the ear for a few days or up to two weeks.
Ear tacks are very small needles with an adhesive backing. Ear tacks are inserted into the ear and left in the ear for a few days or up to one week.
Ear acupuncture can sometimes be a bit sore on the ear but this is compensated by the amazing results that many patients experience almost immediately after the application of the needles.