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Herbal formulas and acupuncture for addiction


I’m looking for any resources or information on where i might find herbal formulas/acupuncture to treat addiction from classical times. does anyone know of any good resources on this topic? i would imagine theres got to be something out there but i’m having a hard time. thank you!


I’m not really certain about this except that any quality references would be in Chinese, so hopefully you can read Chinese. Either way, not to glamorize the past, but addictions were nowhere near as common as they are in modern times for the most part. Even drugs like opium had more medicinal uses and then around the mid 1800’s due to influences of colonization and other forces of human nature you had the first instances of true addiction problems. So you had a growing problem around the 1850’s up to the Maoist revolution around 1949. Drugs during communism were difficult to obtain and other aspects of how closely the behavior of people was watched cut down their use.

I’m about the furthest thing from a Chinese scholar so, you can take my initial analysis with a grain of salt. But, before colonial forces I don’t believe addiction was a huge problem and then after the maoist revolution it wasn’t either. So you only have about a 100 year span where there would have been any treatment anyhow. And then you have today where standards like the NADA protocol are heavily used.


As far as I know there aren’t Chinese herbal formulas that would directly address the neurochemistry of addiction itself. However there are formulas that can help with stress and anxiety. Most of the time people who present with addiction also show some sort of yin deficiency so herbal formuals in that category can help.

Acupuncture works the same way. I don’t treat addiction per se, so much as I address the triggers and causes. Ultimately the person has to want to quit, nothing you can do will impact that. What you can do is ease the cravings, reduce stress and anxiety, improve other aspects of quality of life, and provide them with the best opportunity to successfully quit.

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