Stop Smoking Acupuncture for Quit Smoking (Click here for an interesting external article)
Addiction to nicotine is powerful. Studies have even suggested that nicotine may be just as addictive as hard drugs like heroine and cocaine. For many, the thought of stopping causes a great deal of stress and anxiety
Research has shown that about 70% of adult smokers in the Australia have a desire to quit smoking. Unfortunately, quitting is very difficult and often takes several tries before success is reached. In such an uphill battle, it is not uncommon for potential quitters to look to alternative methods for help.
Acupuncture has proven itself as an effective treatment for addiction to nicotine and other substances. So effective, in fact, that drug addicts have often been ordered by courts to attend acupuncture sessions. Acupuncture has the potential to significantly alleviate irritability, anxiety, concentration problems, and other withdrawal symptoms.
A Formidable Addiction
It is estimated that about one third of all adults (people over the age of 18), all over the world, are cigarette smokers. Nicotine addiction is prevalent in all parts of the globe, claiming over 50 million people in the United States alone.
There are many reasons to quit smoking. Cigarettes contain thousands of chemicals, many of which are known to cause cancer or are otherwise toxic in the human body. Aside from nicotine and the tobacco itself, cigarettes are also known to contain tar, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde (a substance used for preserving dead bodies), ammonia, hydrogen cyanide, arsenic, and DDT (a pesticide which has been banned in the United States and several other countries for its harmful effect on humans and animals). Smoking is about 443,000 peoples' cause of death each year. Emphysema, heightened blood pressure, shortness of breath, smoker's cough, a weakened immune system, and cancer of the lungs and other areas of the body can all be caused by smoking. Aside from the physical danger, a smoking habit is very expensive, controlling, and socially unsavory.
Fortunately, Acupuncture can help.
How Does Acupuncture Help Break the Cigarette Habit?
Acupuncture is an exceedingly successful method of assisting smokers in quitting. Treatment aims to promote relaxation of the patient and detoxification of the body, while focusing on reducing withdrawal symptoms such as jitters, cravings, irritability, and restlessness, so the patient will feel less inclined to resort to a cigarette..
Studies have shown that Acupuncture can have significant long-term effects on a patient's desire to smoke. Interestingly, participants in one study conducted at the University of Oslo in Norway even reported a decreased taste for tobacco after the treatments.
Treatment for nicotine addiction usually involves inserting hair-thin acupuncture needles into various places on the body and in the ears. Small pellets are often taped to the points in the ear in between treatments, allowing for the patient to gently press on them when they are feeling withdrawal symptoms. Pressing on the pellets stimulates the points, easing the cravings and other symptoms.
While Acupuncture is not a magical treatment to automatically remove addiction, it can make quitting significantly easier by reducing cravings, clearing toxicity and stengthening your lungs.
What Points Are Used?
Every case is different, and so every treatment is unique. Generally, though, acupuncture needles are placed on points around the body, as well as in the ear, that are believed in Oriental medicine to influence organs and energy pathways which are associated with smoking and addiction.
Specific points that are commonly used include the “Shenmen,” “Kidney,” “Sympathetic,” “Lung Upper,” “Lung Lower,” and “Hunger” or “Mouth” points in the ear, and the “Tim Mee” point (located on the wrist) and “Four Gate Points” on the body.
Are Herbs Used to Help Me Quit Smoking?
There are several herbal products which are commonly used, alongside Acupuncture, to treat addiction. These products can include Lung Yin Tonics such as Ophiopogonis Combination, Chinese herbal formulas such as a combination of Bupleurum, Dragon Bone, and Oyster Shell, and Lobelia Tea or Green Tea.
These herbal products can be used to moisten the lungs and mouth (which helps to prevent cravings and repair tissue damage), help relieve detox symptoms, and circulate craving-reducing elements throughout the bloodstream. It should be noted, though, that incorrect usage of Chinese Herbs can be dangerous and should be avoided. To learn how to properly use them, consult a licensed acupuncturist or herbologist.
Eight Tips for Quitting – Lifestyle and Dietary Changes
1. Exercise. Exercising is great for reducing stressing and helping you to relax. Withdrawal symptoms may be temporarily put on hold.
2. Eat fresh fruit and vegetables, or drink fruit and vegetable juices. This helps to remove nicotinic acid from the blood, and increase blood sugar.
3. Eat Carrots, celery, leafy green salads, and citrus fruits. These kinds of food increase alkalinity in the body and can help to reduce nicotine cravings.
4. Stay away from junk food, sugar, and caffeinated beverages such as coffee. These products tend to imbalance blood sugar levels and increase blood acidity, which can increase withdrawal symptoms.
5. Sip teas such as Lobelia Tea and/or Green Tea. These herbal drinks, traditionally used for removing strong toxins such as snake bites, can be used for flooding the body with elements that reduce cravings.
6. Drink plenty of water. When the body is hydrated, cravings are reduced. It is best to sip water throughout the day.
7. Learn and practice deep breathing exercises. These can help to increase oxygen in the bloodstream, which has a calming effect.
8. And of course, don't forget to schedule and attend acupuncture treatments!
How Many Treatments Will I Need and How Long Do They Take?
Because every case is unique, the length, number, and frequency of treatments will vary from patient to patient. The most effective method involves 3 treatments over 3 days, to assist with cravings as the body detoxes.