Post traumatic stress, (PTSD), affects millions across the globe from such disasters as tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes and war. PTSD affects the bodies ability to be resilient, cognitive and emotionally and physically balanced. In 2005, after hurricane Katrina and Rita, in response to the horror and tragedy of people’s livelihoods being wiped away, the organization Acupuncture Without Borders was born. Licensed acupuncturist volunteers provided free community acupuncture to nearly 8,000 men, women and children affected by the hurricanes, including relief workers and government officials. Since 2005, AWB has started projects in Haiti, Chile, and Veterans Stress Recovery for soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.
The treatment protocol uses only five needles in each ear and is designed for accessing the brains response to trauma, i.e., the hypothalamus and pineal glands. The body is led to return to a normal parasympathetic response, and to begin moving out of fight or flight mode, thus increasing the quality of sleep, digestion and decreasing anxiety and fear.
Doctors without borders has revolutionized the ability to have healthcare and emergency medicine in under-served areas as well as standing strong in the mission that all people should have access to quality healthcare. In the same way that acupuncture and Chinese medicine compliment Western medicine, Acupuncturists Without Borders can compliment Doctors Without Borders and offer important relief for PTSD.
Haiti remains in crisis with little to no access to quality source of food and water and insufficient infrastructure to support its people. War continues in Iraq and Afghanistan and soldiers continue to return home with significant trauma and a lack of services to process. Japan has just begun to process the trauma of the earthquake and tsunami that hit in early March. Acupuncture Without Borders is committed to working for the people in these far reaching areas.
Brooke Niss, L.Ac. www.universalfamilyclinic.com