Acupuncture for Anxiety, Depression, and Stress

In today’s stress-filled world, anxiety and depression are two of the most common mental illnesses prevalent today. So the question is, does acupuncture for anxiety, depression, and stress still work?

Many acupuncture patients usually have come in and reported varying levels of stress together with other illnesses. Anxiety is usually a common partner with stress, along with chronic pain, back pain, migraines, headache, depression, insomnia, premenstrual syndrome, menopausal symptoms, urinary incontinence, and irritable bowel syndrome.

Symptoms of stress can vary from one person to another. Physical symptoms include tiredness, sore muscles, dull skin, limp hair, headaches, chest pain, insomnia, and frequent colds. Mental stress can cause mood swings, anger, frustration, confusion, paranoia, withdrawal, and more commonly depression.

There has been little clinical research done specifically on stress and the possible methods of treating it. However, it has been long discovered that acupuncture has clear results in successfully treating the many symptoms of chronic stress. These two Randomized Controlled Trials (RCTs) have shown acupuncture to be effective. Firstly, as a complement to anesthesia, acupuncture was shown to help keep a patient hemodynamically stable and reduce stress during laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Secondly, when mental stress caused excessive sympathetic excitation in patients with advanced failure, acupuncture was shown to control it.

A crossover trial with healthy individuals as control showed that when subjected to stress testing, patients who underwent acupuncture handled the test better. Other studies have found that acupuncture is also effective in reducing psychological distress caused by PTSD and is increasing the efficiency of the immune system. In a more interesting study, acupuncture was shown to reduce stress in patients who were undergoing embryo transfer and improve IVF conception success rates. Research clearly shows the efficacy of acupuncture when reducing stress.

Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM, on the other hand, is a medical system that has been developed over thousands of years. It is based on the research of the connection between the mind and the body. It views the state of the mind the same as physical conditions such as pain and headaches. Acupuncture, Chinese herbs, and a healthy lifestyle are at the core of TCM studies and these have been shown to treat depression, anxiety, and stress. In addition, TCM is still effective in treating anxiety and depression when used together with anti-depressant medications. Having an acupuncture treatment does not mean that you must replace your current treatment. Periodical acupuncture treatments help your body to relax, enabling you to get a good night’s rest. There have been MRI studies that show acupuncture stimulating parts of the brain responsible for promoting well-being and self-worth. Because it has been shown that acupuncture encourages good growth of new neurons in the brain, this natural treatment can help with disabilities such as autism and Alzheimer’s disease. Some studies even show that acupuncture can help patients recover from brain injury and stroke.

Acupuncture is an effective way to stimulate the nervous system to produce the right neurochemical messenger molecules that your body needs to recover from pain and sickness. These influence your body’s homeostatic mechanisms, which in turn promote good physical and emotional health.

If you or someone you love needs acupuncture for anxiety, depression, and stress, contact Yin’s Acupuncture & Herbs Clinic today at 972-335-2626 or 214-502-4609.