Could acupuncture help solve the opioid crisis?

By: Kathryn Burcham

Updated:

MANCHESTER, N.H. - Local recovery experts are trying a new method to help those battling opioid addiction.

Acupuncturists will gather in Manchester, N.H. Saturday to show how needles can help people in rehab.

It’s an ancient technique to help with a modern problem. 

Laura Cooley taught a room full of nurses, licensed acupuncturists, and recovery specialists how to apply needles to five spots on the ear Friday. 

It’s part of a holistic approach to opiate treatment just approved this summer by the New Hampshire legislature.

Members of the National Acupuncture Detoxification Association say one acupuncture session can curb cravings for eight to ten hours.

It also says multiple treatments can help patients’ emotional well-being.

“It's a balancing and strengthening treatment,” explained Cooley. “So it actually makes people feel better … it's value is more long term as people get it over time, it builds more ego strength so they're more prepared to deal with the future.”

While it will be used to help hundreds in New Hampshire, it’s still not allowed across the state border. But there is a push to bring it to Massachusetts. 

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