Treatment of Depression and Anxiety with Acupuncture
You may feel you are all alone in the world, with no one who cares about you. The weight of the world is bearing down on your shoulders, and it feels like nobody understands what you’re going through.
Well, you are not alone. In the US, about 1.6 million people suffer from this serious illness. It causes a prolonged period of sadness which affects the way a person feels, thinks, and behaves. Anti-depressant medication is commonly prescribed to treat the symptoms of depression, but 25% or around 4 million people have shown no progress using the average antidepressant treatment. Research has predicted that depression will be the leading cause of negative impact on health and life expectancy all over the world by the year 2030. Despite the fact that depression doesn’t discriminate based on socioeconomic status, ethnicity, or race, women are still more likely to suffer from it.
This serious medical condition lasts for a minimum of two weeks and hinders a person’s ability to carry out daily activities and tasks. Though leading scientific theories point the cause of depression to be neurotransmitter imbalances in the brain, the exact cause behind it is still unknown. More often than not, depressed patients suffer from anxiety as well.
Characteristics of depression and anxiety
In the World Health Organization’s International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD), loss of pleasure or interest, diminished energy levels, reduced activity, and a depressed mood are the key criteria used to diagnose depression. Other common symptoms of depression include:
- Diminished confidence and self-esteem
- Disrupted sleep patterns
- Suicidal and self-harming thoughts
- Pessimistic attitudes regarding the future
- Loss of appetite
- Diminished focus and concentration
It is important to seek help if you experience any of these symptoms. Depression is crippling and prevents a person from carrying out basic daily activities. It affects just about everyone around you, including your loved ones and friends. Depression is thought to be the underlying cause of as many as one million suicides each year. Not only a huge economic burden for the society, but depression is also a cause for disability and disease burden worldwide.
Normal and Abnormal Anxiety
Anxiety is commonly experienced by many in everyday lives. So it is important to differentiate between those who merely have normal stress versus a person who has a condition that may threaten their health. Anxiety ranges from mild feelings of nervousness and upset stomach to PTS disorders, panic attacks, and even phobias. Anxiety that occurs in response to stress or in an unfamiliar situation is normal. But the anxiety that occurs randomly without any known trigger should be carefully examined.
Manifestation of Depression
In general, extreme exhaustion is the common manifestation of depression. Despite wanting to get better, you lack the will to act upon it.
Every patient’s symptoms are different, but the most commons ones are, feeling sad, very tired, having trouble concentrating or making decisions, losing interest in things you used to care about, and getting easily annoyed. Breaking free of this confined state of mind is the path to treating depression.
Acupuncture – New Approach to Mental Health
Some side effects associated with the antidepressant medication have led people to seek safer alternative therapies such as acupuncture and herbal medicine. Acupuncture treatment for depression focuses on balancing energy levels and qi circulation.
Since energy blockage causes an imbalance in the state of mind, promoting proper flowing of qi and blood, and balancing energy and hormone levels becomes the key treatment strategy in treating anxiety and depression.
Once the proper balance and circulation are restored, it becomes possible to let go of anxiety and depression. And you can start enjoying your life again.
Oriental Medicine believes that the mind and body are closely interconnected. However, modern society strains the mind so much to the degree that this connection breaks, disrupting the harmony between mind and body.
While conventional medications focus on restoring certain neurochemical levels, acupuncture can support by trying to bring back the physical and mental balance. Although there’s no specific cure available for depression, acupuncture has helped numerous patients back to their normal lives.
If you are depressed or know anyone who is, contact us to get more information about acupuncture. The most critical and the most difficult step in treating depression is to get up and seek help. Only you can do that. If you are taking antidepressants already, you can incorporate acupuncture treatment to enhance the benefits and reduce the side effects.
At Chang’s Acupuncture and Herbs, we often combine acupuncture and moxibustion to induce deep relaxation and to balance energy. You may feel the difference even after the first treatment. If you are suffering from anxiety or depression, we would like to help. Call us or email us, so you can start on the path to improved emotional health starting today.