The Treatment
A client with needles in her ears
Our ear acupuncture treatments are available on a drop-in basis. You will be in a room where other people are also being treated.

The practitioner will take some basic information about you, and answer any questions you may have. You will then have five small, sterile, single-use needles inserted into each ear.

These needles are very fine, typically having a diameter of 0.2mm, approximately the thickness of two sheets of copying paper. The needles are mounted in a cylindrical handle, which is all you can see when you are treated.

As the needles are inserted, the practitioner will ask you to breathe slowly in and out. You may feel a slight tingling sensation, or you may feel nothing at all.

You will also be offered a cup of detox tea to drink during the treatment. This helps to calm the nerves and clears the body of toxins.

Once the needles are there, it is very important to rest quietly and relax for 35 to 45 minutes in a comfortable and relaxed position with the feet on the floor and legs uncrossed.

Afterwards the needles are removed and you are free to go.

The Benefits
Relaxation with acupuncture
Ear acupuncture is particularly useful in the early stages of alcohol and drug withdrawal; substances may include opiates, crack cocaine, tranquillisers and nicotine.

Ear acupuncture is also helpful for people experiencing stress-related symptoms including insomnia, restlessness, agitation and anxiety, as well as other emotional difficulties.

We use the 'Five Point' protocol, which has been successfully employed since the 1970's in the treatment of addiction. Scroll down to find out more about it's history and current use.

Acupuncture promotes healing using the person's own energy therapy, strengthening their resources and reducing the chances of relapse. It helps balance the body's energies, reducing mood swings and improving sleep patterns. It increases motivation and helps to reduce cravings. It also has a calming effect and enables deep relaxation.

How It Works
Tap/click points for details
Upper lung
Lower lung
Fore brain
Acupuncture points in the ear
Five very fine needles are placed in both ears, each point corresponding to a specific part of the body.

SYMPATHETIC (on the left ear) - Strong pain-killing action. Relieves contractions in intestinal organs, and is useful for treating night sweats.

SHENMEN (on both ears) - This Chinese word means 'gateway to the soul' and concerns our spiritual and emotional areas. It calms the mind, treats insomnia and restlessness and is good for pain control. It helps to harmonise the liver and reduces high blood pressure.

KIDNEY (on both ears) - This is a very important organ in detoxification and is instrumental in treating drug and alcohol withdrawal. It is good for countering low self-esteem, fear and paranoia. The kidney point can also help strengthen the lumbar area of the back and ease back pains.

LIVER (on the right ear) - This point is very useful in treating anger and irritability often experienced when detoxing from drugs, alcohol, nicotine, etc. It is good for treating depression and helps to relieve soreness and pain.

STOMACH (on the left ear) - A very good point for alcohol detoxification and for all stomach and digestive problems, nausea, vomiting, bloating, belching, stomach pain and stomach ulcers. The stomach point helps to send Qi (energy) down, and is therefore a good point to help people feel grounded.

LUNG (upper and lower on both ears) - Helps regulate the body's temperature and assist in breathing difficulties, for example asthma. Helps mentally 'let go' of stress and painful issues from the past. Very helpful for those who wish to give up smoking.

FORE BRAIN (on the right ear) - Reduces high blood pressure, calms the mind and aids relaxation.

What People Say


The Five Point Protocol
The five points
In traditional Chinese acupuncture, diagnosis and treatment could take several hours. In comparison, the Five Point protocol simplifies the process using five fixed points. Here the history and development of this protocol is described in a two part video by Eana Meng, a research student who visited us in 2019.

The first part explains how the Five Point Protocol was developed in the seventies by black revolutionaries in America who wanted to change society for the better. The second part tells how the use of this protocol spread across the world and to the UK talks to practitioners in both the US and UK. At the 11:00 minute point in this video, Pathways to Health practitioner Tim talks about his experience.