The National Acupuncture Detoxification Association
As an Acupuncture Detoxification Specialist, I am certified in this specialized, standardized auricular acupuncture protocol. The NADA protocol consists of five specific auricular (ear) acupuncture points, that address the physical, mental and emotional symptoms of individuals dealing with behavioral health issues; including addictions, mental health, and disaster & emotional trauma. The needles are usually retained for 30-45 minutes, typically in a group setting.
Explanation of the NADA points
Shen Men is a Master Point. Master points are always electrically active in comparison to other points on the ear. This point is often needled first in acupuncture, it relaxes the mind and helps the body to become more receptive to treatment. Shen Men is also known as Divine Gate, it is so powerful that it treats almost everything – stress, anxiety, depression, pain, inflammatory diseases, etc.
Sympathetic / Autonomic:
Brings a patient back to “relaxation mode”. Our sympathetic nervous system is designed to jump start our bodies into fight or flight mode for survival purposes. When that part of our system is activated, our digestive and organ functions shut down so that we can put all our energy into doing whatever is required to survive an emergency situation. However, many people often live in a constant sympathetic nervous system state, always on high alert, anxious, fearful, and energetically out of balance. Living this way leads to a multitude of mental, emotional, and physical health issues; insomnia, anxiety and digestive issues are some of the most common. Parasympathetic mode, on the other hand, is where we should be most of the time. This is where our body regenerates and heals. Treating the Sympathetic / Autonomic Point will bring your body back to this state.
In Eastern Medicine, the kidney meridian is associated with fear. This point improves willpower, calms fear, is good for backache, and calms digestion.
In Eastern Medicine, the liver meridian is associated with anger. This point helps to lift depression, strengthen digestion, improve blood circulation, and alleviate aches and pains.
In Eastern Medicine, the Lung meridian is associated with the emotion of sadness. The lung point controls breathing, cleanses the skin, stops diarrhea, and assists in letting go mentally.
The NADA protocol is best utilized as an adjunct therapy, in conjunction with a comprehensive treatment program that ideally offers other therapeutic elements such as counseling, education, family involvement, mutual support group involvement, and supportive medical health care. Clients in all types of treatment settings; including inpatient, outpatient, incarcerated, shelters, harm reduction and street outreach, can utilize this treatment. Among the benefits reported by both clients and clinicians are improved program retention, a more optimistic and cooperative attitude toward the process of recovery, as well as reductions in cravings, anxiety, sleep disturbance and need for pharmaceuticals.