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Is Acupuncture Helping Addicts With Recovery?

CIRCLEVILLE, Ohio — As the man with the handful of tiny needles moved closer, Sarah Downs’ nervousness grew with his every step. She rocked back and forth in her plastic chair. She fidgeted. She bounced a leg.

Kenneth “Jimmy” Laux, a Circleville chiropractor and certified acupuncturist, knelt beside Downs and pierced each of her ears with five needles. As he did so, he explained what specific spot the needle stick was hitting and how it would help. Certain spots calm nerves and control anger, others deal with sadness and depression. Still more affect a person’s “fight or flight” response and will power.

She was one of eight women who sat for 30 minutes with the needles poking from their ears Wednesday, all part of a new program that includes Laux and his acupuncture as one of the weapons in the fight to beat addiction.

It came about because Pickaway County Common Pleas Judge P. Randall Knece had earlier this year heard about auricular acupuncture (utilizing only external ear points) from a recovery home where he sometimes sends defendants from his court.

Knece underwent acupuncture himself because he wanted see how it felt. He winced a little as the first two needles went in, and laughed as he told the eight women gathered around the tables — some of whom he had earlier sent to prison or county jail — that they lied to him when they said it didn’t hurt. He decided the stick feels a little like a sweat-bee sting.

Read more at August Chronicle