According to Forbes, over 700 treatment centers across the US currently offer acupuncture as a form of holistic or alternative therapy.Studies show varied levels of success at sustaining recovery among those who received acupuncture treatment, but the method has nonetheless evolved from a centuries-old Chinese medicine to a staple in addiction treatment centers throughout the country.

How Does Acupuncture Work?

During acupuncture sessions, a provider will insert thin needles into the skin to access areas where they perceive that a person’s chi – or energy –  is blocked. Releasing the chi and allowing energy to flow freely along the body’s meridians, or pathways, is supposed to help an individual overcome illness and relieve symptoms such as pain or insomnia.

For those who struggle with opioid use, traditional whole-body acupuncture can also provide an alternative to the use of prescription opiates when it comes to pain relief.


woman getting a massage

The type of acupuncture most commonly used in addiction treatment is known as auricular acupuncture. Rather than using needles to treat the entire body, auricular acupuncture focuses on targeting up to five spots in the ear that are associated with the impulses of addiction and organs such as the kidney, liver, and lungs.

The Benefits of Acupuncture

Acupuncture enthusiasts report that their sessions leave them feeling rebalanced, refreshed, and able to appropriately connect with their emotions instead of turning to drugs or alcohol to help them manage their feelings.

However, some medical professionals are skeptical of the effectiveness of acupuncture as a method of addiction treatment and prefer individuals to be more actively involved in their pursuit of recovery by changing their lifestyle and learning healthy coping skills.

Balancing Acupuncture with Other Treatment Methods

Regardless of the effectiveness of acupuncture, enthusiasts and skeptics alike recommend it as a complement to more traditional addiction treatment methods, such as therapy.

Clients at Silvermist will have access to holistic therapies, including acupuncture, during their stay in any of our recovery residences.

For more information about addiction treatment at Silvermist, call (724) 268-4858 today.