Ear Acupuncture in Psychiatric Care From the Health Care Professionals' Perspective: A Phenomenographic Analysis

Kajsa Landgren, Annica Sjöström Strand, Maria Ekelin, Gerd Ahlström

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskriftPeer review


Ear acupuncture is used as a non-pharmacological complement in psychiatric and addiction care to reduce anxiety, depression and insomnia. The aim of this study was to describe health care professionals' perceptions of giving ear acupuncture in different psychiatric settings. Twenty-four professionals providing ear acupuncture to patients with a variety of psychiatric symptoms and/or addiction were interviewed in focus groups. Data were analyzed with a phenomenographic approach. Ear acupuncture was provided, individually or in groups, to in- and outpatients with a variety of psychiatric symptoms and/or addiction. Three descriptive categories emerged: Another tool in the toolbox, Strengthening the profession and Person-centered care. Participants perceived ear acupuncture to be an effective and safe therapeutic tool, easy to use in concert with other methods and easy to adjust to the patients' needs and requests. They perceived that their professional self-confidence increased when having this non-verbal, person-centered and non-pharmacological tool in their hands as a complement to ordinary care. Professionals perceived that patients trained their social skills while participating in acupuncture, and that the treatment helped patients to influence their subjective psychiatric health through gaining control over symptoms. Acupuncture helped professionals to build a trustful relationship and communicate with their patients, verbally and non-verbally. The finding shows ear acupuncture as a safe treatment and promising in relieving psychiatric and somatic symptoms. Acupuncture facilitates the communication with patient, emphasizing participation and shared decision-making, valuable dimensions of person-centered care. Managers' role and attitude in supporting staff needs to be explored in future research.

Sidor (från-till)166-175
TidskriftIssues in Mental Health Nursing
Tidigt onlinedatum2019 jan. 3
StatusPublished - 2019

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