The origin of Auricular acupuncture started in France in 1956 by neurologist Dr. Paul Nogier when he noticed that one of his patients sciatic back pain was resolved when they received a burn on the ear. Intrigued by this development , he started mapping the ear, isolating specific spots that correlate to various organs and systems in the body. Dr. Nogier pictured the ear as a curled up fetus with its head pointing downwards, and began treating his patients by applying pressure to the spot associated with each organ.
Auriculotherapy is the stimulation of the auricle ( The outer projecting portion) of the external ear for the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions in distal parts of the body. It is also known as “ear acupuncture” or auricular acupuncture. Stimulation of acupuncture points on the ear are achieved by the insertion of acupuncture needles, seeds, tacks or magnetic beads. Specific points may be left in the ear and can be stimulated by manual pressure.
WHAT ARE EAR SEEDS, EAR TACKS AND MAGNETS ?
Auriculotherapy or “ear acupuncture” points may be stimulated for a longer period of time by using ear seeds, tacks and magnets. Ear seeds are small seeds from the Vaccaria plant, these seeds are attached to a small clear piece of adhesive backing making them difficult to see in someones ear. Ear seeds may be left in the ear for a few days or up to two weeks. Ear tacks are very small needles with a skin tone colored adhesive backing. Ear tacks are inserted into the ear and left in the ear for a few days or up to one week. Magnet beads are held in place by skin tone colored adhesive backing, these beads are kept in the ear for up to one week and stimulated by manual manipulation.
The most commonly reported uses of auriculotherapy have been for the control of chronic pain, relief of nausea, reduction of hypertension, weight loss, reducing anxiety and stress and aiding in quitting smoking.
Most conditions show a moderate improvement and a reduction in symptoms by four to six sessions and greatly alleviated by eight to twelve sessions.
Two treatments per week for the first two to three weeks, then once a week for several more weeks. The frequency of treatments progressively decrease to once a month as the medical disorder becomes less pronounced.
A typical auriculotherapy treatment lasts 20 to 30 minutes. Four to six acupuncture needles are inserted and left in place for approximately 20 minutes. In some cases, Tacks, seeds or magnetic beads are left in the ear to be stimulated between treatments
“Placing five acupuncture needles in the outer ear may help people lose that spare tire, researchers report. Ear acupuncture therapy is based on the theory that the outer ear represents all parts of the body. One type uses one needle inserted into the area that is linked to hunger and appetite, while the other involves inserting five needles at different key points in the ear”
“If the trend we found is supported by other studies, the hunger acupuncture point is a good choice in terms of convenience. However, for patients suffering from central obesity, continuous stimulation of five acupuncture points should be used,”
said lead researcher Sabina Lim, from the department of meridian and acupuncture in the Graduate College of Basic Korean Medical Science at Kyung Hee University in Seoul, South Korea.
According to Lim, the effectiveness of acupuncture on obese patients is closely related to metabolic function. “Increased metabolic function promotes the consumption of body fat, overall, resulting in weight loss”
The report was published online Dec. 16 2013 in the journal Acupuncture in Medicine
- (1) The Autonomic Point which calms the nervous system and helps with overall relaxation.
- (2) the Shen Men or “spirit gate,” which reduces anxiety and nervousness.
- (3) the Kidney Point, for calming fears and healing internal organs.
- (4) the Liver Point for detoxification, blood purification, and to quell aggression.
- (5) the Lung Point, which promotes aeration and helps clients let go of grief.
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