COVID-19 'long-haulers' turn to acupuncture to help with lingering symptoms

Encircle Acupuncture
Posted at 4:38 PM, Feb 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-17 19:41:22-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Some people with lingering symptoms from COVID-19 are trying acupuncture to help them heal.

Christy Fike has been going to appointments at Encircle Acupuncture for weeks. She lost her sense of smell after testing positive for COVID-19 in November. "I am definitely seeing small improvements each week," Fike said.

She hopes it comes back completely, but some things smell off.

She can't smell perfume and doesn't know if she sprays too much. "The biggest thing I was the most concerned about was not being able to smell myself, I know that sounds terrible, but having that moment like do I smell bad? Do I smell good?" Fike said.

People who lose smell also worry about not being able to detect things like burning food or a dirty diaper.

Owner Alexa Hulsey said they have an influx of long-haulers in treatment. "Acupuncture works by restoring the flow of energy in your body," Hulsey said.

Putting needles in noses targets smell, Hulsey said. "These points on the side of the nose are great like that," Hulsey said. "Also there’s these points between the eyebrows which good for any sinus and nose problems. It’s good for headaches as well."

They also help people who are suffering from loss of taste, fatigue, and other ailments. "They also may be working with a nutritionist, or a chiropractor, or their primary care as well," Hulsey said.

For people like Fike, they'll throw the kitchen sink at it. "I have hope, and I’m just continuing to do this, and also continuing to do the smell re-training," Fike said.

At the end of her session, she sleeps peacefully.

The clinic costs between $20-40 a session based on a sliding scale. They have locations in Bellevue and East Nashville.