Paul Enright, Dipl. Acup.
It is important to realize what acupuncture can and cannot do for smokers. Acupuncture cannot make lifestyle changes, the individual must do this on their own. If they cannot make these changes the success rate is definitely decreased. Acupuncture can help reduce cravings, stress levels and anxiety from quitting.
Plan a quit date and take about a week to decrease your cigarette intake. Some people like to smoke more before they quit, however, this usually makes the cravings worse. The first acupuncture treatment will be on your quit date and the second will be 24 - 48 hours later. Typically the effects of the acupuncture lasts 24 -48 hours before the bad cravings come back. These first 2 treatments should get you through the "five days of hell" as I call it when the cravings are the worst. After these 2 treatment I recommend boosters as needed. Some individuals need a couple of boosters, some don't.
Some people do better in a two step process. The first two treatments help them to significantly reduce but they do not get to zero cigarettes. I recommend they limit the number of cigarettes per day ( no more than 5) and we set another quit date the next week. Again we follow the same protocol as before. One treatment on the quit date and the next 24 - 48 hours later. For some people this two step process works better.