Auricular Acupuncture

Women with Acupuncture needles in her ear

DAPL provides a complimentary service in which Auricular Acupuncture is offered to interested DAPL clients. This complementary therapy is specifically geared towards any form of addiction.

All our Auricular Acupuncture workers have completed training as practitioners through SMART UK and hold their accreditation certificate and membership.

Auricular Acupuncture is based on a combination of ear acupuncture points which was first introduced by a physician offering drug treatment at Lincoln Hospital in New York. This treatment has been shown to be clinically effective in treating symptoms of addictions, helping to reduce cravings and withdrawals; headaches, body aches, sweats, anxiety, sleep disturbances etc. It is believed the treatment helps turn back on the production system of the body’s “feel good” chemicals such as dopamine and endorphins, which become depleted/switched off by the more chronic use of drugs/alcohol.

Auricular Acupuncture can be useful at any level of substance misuse including harm reduction as it does not require abstinence to be effective.

The procedure itself is very relaxing and has a calming effect on participants. It is provided in a small group setting and involves the gentle placement of 5 small sterile, single use disposable needles into specific acupuncture points on both ears.

The clients then relax for up to 45 minutes with the points being stimulated by the needles then these are removed and a herbal detox or relaxation tea is offered. The sessions are on-going and on a weekly basis, effects of treatment being accumulative. Through evaluating participants response to treatment there is noticeably good attendance levels from the groups.

Participants have responded by comments mostly on their increase in relaxation, mental clarity and focus, self-esteem and general well being.

Substance misuse and dependency are complex issues requiring responsive, creative approaches to treatment.

My experience over the past 6 years is that DAPL is a very accessible and flexible service sensitive to the needs of the population.

Dr Judith M Burgess, Consultant Psychiatrist, NHS Fife