Auriculotherapy is a technique of using points on the skin of the auricle (external ear) to diagnose and treat pain and medical conditions of the body. Also referred to as Auricular Medicine, practitioners all over the world use this therapy to treat pain, addictions and internal disorders with excellent results. Whether used in conjunction with another treatment or by itself, auriculotherapy is often effective when other treatments have failed. Best of all, it is safe, non-invasive and has no known side effects.
Auriculotherapy has its roots in 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.
In the 1950’s, Dr. Paul Nogier of Lyon, France expanded the original Chinese charts into a more comprehensive system. Whereas the ancient texts showed only a few points for specific conditions, Dr. Nogier’s work demonstrated the ear is actually a micro-map of the entire body, with all body parts represented. Thus, all parts of the body can be evaluated and treated by means of the external ear.
Much of Dr. Nogier’s original work has been verified in numerous research studies, and both Chinese and European systems are based on his work.
Applications of Auricular Therapy
Aricular therapy temporarily increases your body’s metabolic rate and lowers appetite by manipulating the nervous system. It alters the sympathetic nervous system to improve resistance to insulin, which metabolizes glucose in the body. Auricular therapy elevates the levels of a hormone known as serotonin, which tones smooth muscles of the stomach, and therefore reduces abdominal fat storage. Depending on one’s weight loss goals, the treatment can be done every two to three days a week to lose up to 10 pounds of weight.
Nicotine addiction is very difficult to overcome. To successfully quit smoking, a person needs emotional support hence the treatment should not focus on managing the physical symptoms only. Auricular acupuncture helps patients overcome their smoking addiction by curbing the cravings and the characteristic restlessness. It also detoxifies the body and promotes relaxation.
National Acupuncture Detoxification Association (NADA) recommends the 5-Point auricular acupuncture therapy for nicotine cessation. After the therapy, small pellets are taped on the acupuncture points on the ear. When the patient begins craving for a cigarettes, he is suppose to gently massage the acupuncture points by pressing the pellets. Patients who have used this therapy to quit smoking confess that the taste and smell of cigarettes becomes unpalatable after a few sessions.
Treating Chronic Pain
Chronic pain is triggered by the constriction of connective tissues that surround the muscles, resulting in spasms. The brain and the nervous system normally regulate tissue and muscle contractions, and spasms occur when the nerves go haywire. Stimulating the reflex points on the ear electrically resets the nerve impulses, thereby stopping the spinal reflexes that cause the back pain. Auricular therapy can also be used to treat chronic pain caused by sore nerve endings, as it stimulates the release of the endorphins that lessen the pain.