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The Sussex College of Chinese Massage & Acupuncture

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Ear Acupuncture

acupuncture therapy on auricle, horizontal very close up photo

Auricular Therapy

Ear acupuncture, also known as auricular therapy, is a form of treatment that can be administered alone or combined with other treatments. Auricular therapy is the treatment of various disorders and common symptoms via the auricle, or ear as it is more commonly known. The ear has around 200 pressure points over its surface. These points connect with many aspects of the body including anatomical locations, internal organs, and also the various systems of the body.

Auricular therapy allows the practitioner to offer an alternative therapy to traditional acupuncture and tuina, and may be helpful to those with a sensitive nature with regards to undressing, for example. It also offers the benefit of being able to treat symptoms without a full diagnosis. This is due to the fact that most of the points on the ear are named after and related to anatomical locations such as hip, ankle, wrist, elbow, shoulder, liver, lung, kidney, and spleen, for example. This makes ear acupuncture a very simple and useful therapy being able to offer a kind of ‘quick fix’ treatment, and is often a very effective treatment when used alone. When ear acupuncture is administered alongside other treatments however, such as Chinese massage or traditional acupuncture, the holistic treatment of the patient is enhanced.

The Treatment

The procedure for ear acupuncture is similar to facial cosmetic acupuncture. Small fine, sterile needles are inserted at treatment specific points on the surface of the ear. Tiny pressure balls or seeds held in place with small plasters are also used. These can be applied as a main auricular treatment or after any form of other treatment to continue a therapeutic effect after the patient has left the clinic. When used in this way, the patient is able to gently massage the press ball between thumb and finger to stimulate the pressure point that the press ball is placed over. This has the advantage of continuing treatment in between appointments. It also offers an alternative for those with a fear of needles.


Auricular acupuncture is said to help the body in balancing levels of stress hormones, and has proved very helpful in dealing with substance abuse recovery, and mood disorders. Many acupuncturists choose to specialise in this area, often with good results.

Ear acupuncture may help with the following conditions

Addictions including tobacco, food, drugs and alcohol




Back Pain

Bronchial Disorders







Irritable Bowel Syndrome


Joint Pain

Muscle Tension




Women’s Disorders (Gynaecological)

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