Acupuncture As A Complementary Modality For Dental Treatment


Acupuncture in dentistry as an adjunct treatment for many conditions has been practiced and researched in institutions throughout Asia and Europe for many decades. Only recently has this practice begun to gain traction in practice in the United States entering into academic clinics such as University of North Carolina Dental School Clinic.

I have made it my aim to educate my patients and a variety of dental professionals about the scope of acupuncture and how it can provide lasting relief of acute and chronic issues including the following

  • Temporomandibular disorders including pain, clicking and locking
  • Chronic muscle pain or spasm
  • Atypical facial pain
  • Tension and migraine type headaches
  • Nerve pain, nerve injury, post herpetic neuralgia
  • Gag reflex
  • Dental anxiety
  • Dry mouth
  • Rhinitis and sinusitis
  • Post operative pain

If you are a dentist, oral surgeon, or dental student, I have provided links to abstracts below that will demonstrate where acupuncture has been reviewed and advised as a treatment for these conditions. You will also find where researchers have found that, despite a strong historical precedent for use of acupuncture for a condition, further research is warranted.

If you are a practitioner and would like a demonstration or presentation for your office or colleagues, please contact us to schedule. If you are an individual seeking treatment for one of these conditions and would like me to communicate with your dentist or oral surgeon about treatments or treatment plans, I am willing to do this. – please contact me directly.


Systematic reviews

Introduction to acupuncture in dentistry.

Br Dent J. 2000 Aug 12;189(3):136-40.

Rosted P.


The use of acupuncture in dentistry: a review of the scientific validity of published papers.

Oral Dis. 1998 Jun;4(2):100-4.

Rosted P.


Temporomandibular Dysfunction

Practical recommendations for the use of acupuncture in the treatment of temporomandibular disorders based on the outcome of published controlled studies.

Oral Dis. 2001 Mar;7(2):109-15.

Rosted P.


Effectiveness of acupuncture in the treatment of temporomandibular disorders of muscular origin: a systematic review of the last decade.

La Touche R, Angulo-Díaz-Parreño S, de-la-Hoz JL, Fernández-Carnero J, Ge HY, Linares MT, Mesa J, Sánchez-Gutiérrez J. J Altern Complement Med. 2010 Jan;16(1):107-12.


Bells Palsy

Physical therapy for Bell’s palsy (idiopathic facial paralysis).

Teixeira LJ, Valbuza JS, Prado GF. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2011 Dec 7;(12):CD006283.

 Department of Neurology, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Wai Nan Guo Xue Xiang #37, Chengdu, Sichuan, China, 610041.


Dental pain

The effectiveness of acupuncture in treating acute dental pain: a systematic review.

Ernst E, Pittler MH. Br Dent J. 1998 May 9;184(9):443-7.


Dry Mouth

Randomized controlled trial of acupuncture for prevention of radiation-induced xerostomia among patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma.

Meng Z, Garcia MK, Hu C, Chiang J, Chambers M, Rosenthal DI, Peng H, Zhang Y, Zhao Q, Zhao G, Liu L, Spelman A, Palmer JL, Wei Q, Cohen L.

Cancer. 2012 Jul 1;118(13):3337-44. doi: 10.1002/cncr.26550. Epub 2011 Nov 9.



Dental Anxiety

Auricular acupuncture effectively reduces state anxiety before dental treatment – a randomised controlled trial.

Michalek-Sauberer A, Gusenleitner E, Gleiss A, Tepper G, Deusch E.

Clin Oral Investig. 2012 Jan 6. [Epub ahead of print]

Trigeminal Neuralgia

Practical application of meridian acupuncture treatment for trigeminal neuralgia.

Beppu S, Sato Y, Amemiya Y, Tode I.

Anesth Pain Control Dent. 1992 Spring;1(2):103-8.

Post Operative Dental Pain

Acupuncture treatment of pain dysfunction syndrome after dental extraction.

Rosted P, Jørgensen V.

Acupunct Med. 2002 Dec;20(4):191-2.

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