How to Use Acupuncture to Stop Smoking

Overview

Quitting smoking is one of the hardest experiences a person can face, because the nicotine in cigarettes is highly addictive. Though people may face withdrawals and temptations during the period where they try to stop smoking, succeeding and avoiding cigarettes is an invigorating feeling of accomplishment. Getting acupuncture can help smokers to quit smoking, when done correctly and often enough and in conjunction with other methods, such as personal communication. The American Cancer Society explains that acupuncture reduces the amount of cigarette cravings a smoker has so that it is easier to quit.

Step 1

Set up a consultation. Have an initial consultation with a licensed acupuncturist to determine the acupuncturist’s ability to treat you. Don’t be afraid to shop around until you find an acupuncturist you feel is qualified to help you quit smoking. Find a friend, family member or co-worker that you trust who has quit smoking or will otherwise be willing to help you quit. Ask this person if he is willing to call you and receive calls from you daily for the next few weeks while you quit smoking. Acupuncturist Leah Martino explains that personal communication with another person is essential in helping you quit smoking and in keeping you accountable.

Step 2

Set up appointments. Get acupuncture treatments twice a week for at least one month as you work on avoiding all cigarettes. According to the website Acupuncture.com, acupuncture works by intercepting signals the brain receives that tell it to crave nicotine. While acupuncture cannot get rid of cravings completely, it can help a smoker to experience only three to five cravings a day if they used to experience 20 a day, according to Acupuncture.com.

Step 3

Ask your acupuncturist to use special herbs along with the acupuncture to reduce your cigarette cravings even more. According to Acupuncture.com, herbs can be infused in with acupuncture treatment in order to make the treatments more effective. The website states that some herbs reduce irritability, while others reduce nicotine cravings. A trained and license acupuncturist should know which herbs to use for your individual situation.

Step 4

Create new habits. Continue getting acupuncture weekly for the next four to six months as you maintain honest, daily communication with a support buddy. You may still experience some cravings for cigarettes, but learning to fight them is important. Acupuncture.com recommends trying new things, such as repeating a positive affirmation about yourself, deep breathing exercises or taking a long walk when you feel a craving for a cigarette.

About this Author

Sarah Davis has worked in nutrition in the clinical setting and currently works as a licensed Realtor in California. Davis began writing about nutrition in 2006 and had two chapters published in “The Grocery Store Diet” book in 2009. She enjoys writing about nutrition and real estate and managing her website, RealtorSD.com. She earned her bachelor’s degree in nutrition from San Diego State University.