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Substance Use

Whether you find it challenging to start your day without coffee or you're struggling with substance abuse, acupuncture can help you overcome these hurdles. Acupuncture treatment for alcohol and substance abuse can curb cravings and ease withdrawal symptoms, facilitating natural detoxification.

Auricular (ear) acupuncture treatments can help with various types of substance use:

  • Alcohol

  • Nicotine: Cigarettes, Chewing Tobacco, Cigars

  • Cocaine and Crack

  • Methadone (Crystal Meth)

  • Marijuana

  • Heroin (Morphine)

  • Caffeine: Coffee, Tea

  • Pain Medications: Hydrocodone, Vicoden, Oxycotin


When integrated with psychological counseling from addiction specialists, acupuncture can be an effective, holistic approach to managing withdrawal symptoms and suppressing cravings. Most acupuncture treatments for substance abuse recovery use auricular (ear) acupuncture. This system of acupuncture has demonstrated significant efficacy in substance use recovery. One study conducted by Yale University on the use of acupuncture to treat cocaine addiction found that recipients of acupuncture were twice as likely to have cocaine-negative urine screens as control groups during treatment. In addition, the acupuncture group in the cocaine addiction study was able to refrain from returning to cocaine use for longer periods of time than the control group. Auricular acupuncture has also had long-term success in group setting addiction treatment programs in New York City’s Lincoln Hospital and prison programs in Dade County Florida.

All acupuncture treatment programs adhere to the National Acupuncture Detoxification Association (NADA) Treatment Protocol, a proven method that helps address emotional, psychological, and physical challenges associated with overcoming addiction.

The NADA protocol uses five specific acupuncture points on each ear:

  • Sympathetic point balances sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems and has a strong analgesic effect

  • Shenmen point, called “Spirit Gate," has a calming and relaxing effect to help alleviate anxiety and nervousness that accompany withdrawal

  • Kidney point tonifies the source energy and essence that are often damaged through chemical abuse and can help resolve fear and increase the willpower needed to overcome addiction

  • Liver point promotes repair of the liver from drug and alcohol abuse and aids in resolving anger and aggression

  • Lung point strengthens the immune system, accelerates detoxification, and helps ease the experience of grief and letting go

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