In Chinese medicine ( as well as other traditions from different parts of the world) different parts of the body are looked at in isolation to represent a map of the entire body.
These maps guide the health care practitioner to know where they need to stimulate (with massage or other tools) to help bring balance to organ function and improve blood circulation to a area that is maybe not performing to it’s best ability.
Reflexology is a popular therapy which most people have heard of where the feet are the main focus. Stimulating points on and around the feet draw connections to different parts of the body including the digestive system, head and face and other organs and body parts.
A microsystem that we use quite regularly in clinic as Chinese medicine practitioners is one of the ear. This method of treatment isn’t as old as using the Chanels and meridians on the body that we mostly focus on when doing acupuncture, but as an adjunct to your treatment adding points on the ear either in the treatment with small fine needles or by applying “ear seeds” which are small stickers with a little seed ( similar to the size of a mustard seed) at the end of the session to be worn home for a few days after can be very effective in supporting the treatment goals.
Like with most things in Chinese medicine it is often not the use of a single point or herb that will give the best result. Using a combination of Acupunture/acupressure points will usually give the most powerful effect.
There are certain protocols that have been developed over the years and have been adopted by certain groups with great success.
One of the acupuncture point protocols that are used around the world where developed by the National Acupuncture detoxification association (NADA)
NADA protocols have been shown in a variety of clinical settings to be beneficial in dealing with substance abuse as well as help with emotional, physical and psychological symptoms involved in addictions.
“Battlefield acupuncture” is another method of ear acupuncture that has been used since 2001 to help veterans and soldiers battle chronic pain. The departments for defence and veterans administration where looking for a non-pharmogenic (drug free) way to help these people cope with the chronic pain they had been left with as result of their work in the Army and found ear acupuncture to be effective to help cope with pain.
The aim is that through points on the ear it is having an effect on how the central nervous system process pain.
These application of these protocols translate beautifully into our clinic where we have people healing from injuries or dealing with chronic stress and anxiety.
Feel free to ask your practitioner next time you’r in to see if ear acupuncture can be incorporated as part of your session.