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Ear Acupuncture Therapy

There are times when Sullivan Acupuncture comes across patients who either want extra help in the form of take-home acupressure therapy or do not have the money to afford a full series of acupuncture treatments. Therefore, Sullivan Acupuncture is now introducing take home Ear Seed and Tacks!

What is auricular (ear) acupuncture? Much like foot reflexology, the ear is seen to be a microcosm of the body in Chinese medicine. Imagine a baby upside down in the ear like this:

Based off this image, the Chinese started to needle into parts of the ear and found, based off patient feedback, that different areas affect different parts of the body. How and why does this work? Much of what the Chinese believed was based of trial and error and belief system. Since it works, modern medicine is beginning to find the mechanisms by which it works and, when it comes to the ear, researchers learned that the ear has a lot of neurological connections to the reflex centers of the brain that control different parts of the body. Also, the ear is very sensitive to pressure, the more sensitive to pressure an area of the body is (hands, feet, face, ears), the more nerve innervations it has to the brain and extra stimulation of those areas can increase the release of endorphins (a neurotransmitter that dulls pain in the body) compared to other regions of the body. That is why ear acupuncture works so well!

Sullivan Acupuncture offers take home ear acupuncture either in the form of small mustard-shaped seeds with medical grade tape or ASP tacks. These typically stay on for 3-4 days before falling off. For the time it stays on, it continuously stimulates the body through those points, giving the patient the relief they need. Ear acupuncture can be used for a myriad of conditions, but is typically used for: smoking/addiction cessation, pain control (AKA battlefield acupuncture), stress/anxiety, sleep and weight loss. While ear seeds can be less painful to apply, they are not as powerful as ASP tacks. ASP tacks involve a small pinch upon insertion and, unless a patient is very fearful of pain, is not a big issue. Once the tacks fall out, they are not an issue, meaning they are so small that they won't cause pain if stepped on.

Ear Tacks

Ear Seeds

Cost for treatment is $20 and can be stand-alone or additional to an existing treatment.

A special note about Battlefield Acupuncture. This is a protocol currently used by the Armed Forces to help soldiers with pain as opposed to opioids. Research studies on the protocol found it to have between 75-82% immediate pain reduction. For more information, click here.


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