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Can Acupuncture Help with Opiate Addiction?

Can Acupuncture Help with Opiate Addiction?

Finding relief from chronic pain has, in part, fueled the opioid epidemic. There are a vast number of reasons why the opioid crisis is spiraling out of control, but it is the people who are struggling with addiction that suffer the most. Acupuncture has been making headlines as a way to support people who struggle with opiate addiction. Find out why more people are turning to this alternative medicine for relief from addiction and how it helps ease symptoms.

A New Path

Wellness blogs and alternative health gurus have long described acupuncture as a treatment for chronic pain. Research has backed it up, with more people turning to it for relief. There has been variability in some claims about how it works to treat pain, but it depends on who is doing the study and how the treatment is being administered. Alternative healers believe this practice has been around long enough to deserve better treatment by the broader medical community, particularly as it relates to the opioid crisis. Alternative practices are generally not covered by insurance, so this hurdle needs to be overcome in order for more people to receive access to this possibly life giving treatment option.

When Drugs Stop Working

The challenge many people with chronic pain face with using drugs such as opioids is dependence. It is easy for the body to quickly build dependence on (or addiction to) opioids, which brings people to a point of desperation. When the drugs stop easing pain, people become desperate. They will take more than they should, which can lead to overdose, but moreover continue to fuel addiction. When acupuncture entered the picture, it provided some measure of hope for relief in the midst of a crisis.

Skepticism to Hope

Even medical skeptics realize this ancient practice, going back to 100 BCE in China, seems to focus on Qi, or a life force that flows between energy meridians in the body. Western medicine anchors itself on observing patterns, measuring data points and promoting healing in this way. Working with energy fields in western medicine has prompted some to say it is pseudoscience, which has no place in traditional medicine. However, for people who struggle with addiction to opioids, there is hope for a better future beyond drugs. The American Pain Society has endorsed use of acupuncture for chronic pain, suggesting this ancient technique might take its place as a new, holistic approach for people who have tried other methods and still need relief.

Holistic therapies are an integral part of exploring the best way to deal with addiction. We support your journey from the first decision to seek help to recovery and aftercare. If you are struggling with opiate addiction, other drugs, or alcohol, we can help. Call us 24/7 at our toll-free number: 866-294-9401