Eastern medicinal practices have been around for thousands of years, but only now with modern research are we dubbing them legit, backing them with Western studies, etc. But acupuncture and acupressure are for real, always have been, and we can expect real results.
Not everyone can afford regular acupuncture, but acupressure is very accessible both for us to do at home, and to have done for us. A popular place to begin is on the ear, which is absolutely loaded with pressure points that reach the vagus nerve—the largest cranial nerve in the body.
The vagus nerve is a main component of our parasympathetic nervous system and is linked to major functions like our mood and happiness, immune response, gut-brain axis and digestion, PMS, stress and tension, and even our heart.
Ear seeds, sometimes referred to as auricular therapy, are a mode of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that has been practiced since 500 BC as a way to access these pressure points. They are essentially stickers that adhere to the skin on our ears, and they last through sleeping and showers for several days, and even up to a week.
The pressure part consists of a small sphere, either a gold or crystal ball shape on a small, translucent adhesive surface, pressed expertly onto areas of the ear that trigger different aspects of the vagus nerve, affecting our flow of qi, or lack thereof, as according to TCM.
Not only are these little glimmering spheres adorable—they look like tiny earrings speckled on the surface of the ear, like a delicate constellation of stars—but they’re effective. People have reported less gas and stomach issues, better sleep, lowered stress, relief from cramps, and even regulated mood while wearing ear seeds.
Typically, a professional can put them in for you using some specialized tweezers to gently lift the seeds from their adhesive surface and place them on each indicated point. But with the right guide and a steady hand, we can perform this on ourselves or our friends from home, too. We have a little bit of our own control here, as once they are placed, whether it’s by us or a professional, we can press the seeds periodically throughout the day to trigger these pressure points and reap the benefits.
We recommend finding a place that does them for your first round, but if you want to try them out on your own, follow these steps.
1. Clean and dry the surface of your ear. Ear seeds will always go on the outside of your ear, never in your ear canal, so you can easily wipe down the ear surface with a disinfectant wipe or some alcohol to create a dry, adhesive surface.
2. Find the correct point. Most ear seed kits come with a guide or charts indicating the location of specific pressure points for specific organs or ailments.
3. Use fine-point tweezers to remove the ear seed from its sheet and apply it to the point on your ear. Press gently on the point to make sure it has adhered securely, and to kick off the first pressure point.
4. Massage them gently. We can do this as many times as we want per day, but it’s recommended to do it at least two to three times each day, or when we are suffering symptoms. Apply pressure by rubbing the seeds with a circular motion for a few minutes.
5. Change them regularly. Ear seeds might fall off on their own after three to five days. It’s not recommended to leave them on for more than one week, even if they feel secure.
Remove them simply by peeling them off, making sure not to let them fall into the ear. We may notice an indentation where the seed was pressed into the skin, but that’s normal and will fade in a short time.
Up next, shop the newest items from the Poosh Shop here.