American researchers have found that auricular acupressure can help reduce the negative impacts of occupational stress on frontline healthcare staff. In a randomised trial, 117 staff in a paediatric trauma centre, received either auricular acupuncture, auricular acupressure, or auricular massage delivered over a three week period.
The acupressure, given using ear seeds, was associated with a significant reduction in measures of psychological burnout and secondary traumatic stress. The team concludes that auricular acupressure is a safe, effective, and practical strategy to reduce burnout and secondary traumatic stress and may support health care workers’ ability to develop caring relationships with patients and families.
(Effects of Acupuncture & Acupressure on Burnout in Health Care Workers: A Randomized Trial. Journal of Trauma Nursing, Nov-Dec 2021.)