Acupuncture and Piercings: No-No or Good-to-Go?

Hallo! Sabrina here, and I’m wondering if you’ve ever heard of piercings being used as continuous treatment (ex.migraines, weight loss). I have been coming across this lately, but wondering if it’s legit.

I’m curious, that’s for sure.

Here’s what I know: whenever you disrupt the body’s Qi, or energy, bad things happen. 

My first thought is, “yeah, that might be an issue,” but so many people seem to have piercings with no (perceived) problems. So on second thought, “ehh, it’s probably fine.” But are they really fine?

I’m not taking my rationale as fact. Let’s break it down, shall we?

For starters, your body has A LOT of acupuncture points, starting at the tip of your head down to your toes. When you stab/needle (whatever makes you more comfortable) these points with an acupuncture needle, you get some great benefits, especially with repeat treatments. 

Since piercings are so commonplace nowadays, it’s highly unlikely that someone WON’T have a piercing somewhere on their body. Some starting at birth, like girls ears.

So here’s what I wanna know: how do piercings actually interact with acupuncture points?

According to Sally Byrd, ND, a traditional Naturopath, massage therapist, and reflexologist, “When the body’s Qi [energy] is compromised due to diet, stress, anxiety, surgery, aging, hormonal reduction, medications, physical accidents, disease, and environmental toxins including metal insertions, the energy may become stagnant. Energy imbalances reduce our natural immunity and set the stage for chronic or long term diseases.” [1]

Ok, that’s a mouthful, but what it breaks down to is that piercings can interrupt the body’s flow of energy to create more issues. So, that would mean any piercing is a no-no, right?


But what about the whole needle grasp philosophy? You know, the thing that states that after 20-40 minutes the body gets desensitized to the stimulation?

I’ve heard of people getting piercings to improve headaches and migraines, and while it’s controversial, it might actually work (I mean, I haven’t personally done it, soooo…). Especially when they have a Daith piercing, which goes through the ear’s innermost cartilage fold.

If that’s true, that would mean not ALL piercings are bad, right?

So if it’s not the piercing that’s inherently bad, is it the metal used?

Melissa Skelly, licensed acupuncturist, acupoint specialist, sound healer and owner of The Zen Den Center, believes “the type of metal can make a difference in energetics, gold is more tonifying or supportive, where silver is more sedative or releasing of blocked energy.” [2]


And while this makes me think that SOME piercings could POTENTIALLY be beneficial, I came across this study that tested piercings with weight loss. [3]

Their theory was that if you pierced specific points on the body (the tragus and anti tragus), it could minimize cravings, improve emotions related to food, and routines surrounding food. 

Out of the seven people they tested, five would recommend that others get these piercings, while all seven reported that the two piercings helped with cravings and their bad food habits.

Huh. I’ll wait until an actual scientist does a study on it before I’m convinced, BUT the results are promising. 

Ok, so after all that, let’s recap: 

  • Some believe all piercings are a no-no under any circumstance 
  • Others believe it CAN help, but ONLY the ear is good-to-go 
  • A few believe the metal is the real issue
  • Others (non-medical professionals) say “Eff it, I’m piercing it.” 

I’m still figuring out my stance, but what are your thoughts?





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