Acupuncture being one of the most widely used therapies has now proved the significance of its treatment to eliminate addiction disorders.
At National Acupuncture Detoxification Association ( NADA) , an alternative therapy is being used as an adjunct to conventional therapy because acupuncture reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms associated with addictive substance use and contributes to improved treatment engagement and treatment retention, commonly referred as acudetox, acupuncture detoxification, five-point ear acupuncture protocol and five-point protocol.
NADA acupuncture is not dependent on Traditional Chinese Medicine theory but, rather, can be used in the acute and chronic phases of medical and psychiatric disease, across a broad spectrum of symptoms and conditions, this kind of acupuncture can also be used before and after a diagnosis has been made.
A study with participants from residents of the highly structured Mecklenburg Country Substance Abuse Services Centre (SASC) was performed. With 167 patients treated in a SASC’s 28- day treatment program between March 2008 and June 2008 were included in this study, where each patient had an option to choose from just undergoing the conventional treatment or conventional treatment plus NADA acupuncture.
The conventional treatment consisted of intake assessments, physician physical examination, nursing and nurse-practitioner care, administration of prescription medication, urgent and emergency medical (including psychiatric) services as needed, educational groups, individual and group counseling, nightly 12 step meetings, dual-diagnosis group, aftercare planning and referral, and a daily study hall.
During the study, 103 patients agreed on NADA acupuncture plus conventional treatment program, where the patients were needled at five bilateral auricular acupuncture points while seated together in a large group of up to 20 patients per treatment session. Needles were inserted at the beginning of the treatment hour and generally remained in place for 30-45 minutes.
Both the NADA-acupuncture-plus-conventional-treatment group and the conventional-treatment-only group were offered sessions twice weekly.
NADA acupuncture-plus-conventional-treatment group scores decreased significantly from pre-to post treatment. When compared the NADA-acupuncture-plus conventional-treatment group to the conventional-treatment only group there was a statistically significant difference for all 7 measures such as :
” Body aches/headaches
” Decreased energy
This study examined seven common behavioral health symptoms in a population of patients with substance use disorder diagnoses and explored whether or not NADA acupuncture plus conventional treatment is helpful for alleviating symptoms measured.
Therefore with the results NADA treatment is a simple and inexpensive treatment that may help alleviate some of the behavioral health symptoms that can affect individuals with a diagnosis of substance use disorder and successfully reduce symptoms across all seven common behavioral health symptom measures.
Whereas, patients with substance use disorder diagnoses clearly struggle with common physical cognitive and emotional behavioral health symptoms in conventional treatment, which interferes with their ability to receive optimal benefit from conventional treatment for which NADA plus conventional treatment is highly recommended.
Note: Dr Raman Kapur ([email protected]), the author of the article is a practitioner of medical acupuncture in New Delhi since the past 31 years and is also the recipient of the first Padma Shri in medical acupuncture in India. He presently heads the department of Acupuncture at Sir Ganga RamHospital.