When people suffer from chronic or long lasting episodes of stress, the anxiety, fear, uneasiness, nervousness, the mental impact can become chronic. This, in turn, leads to a high level of the powerful stress hormones such as cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. After prolonged periods of use the brain, the body, and organs impacted by these hormones become fatigued and begin fail. Disruptions will contribute to imbalances in all other hormones that govern bodily functions such as sleep, mood, metal sharpness, and growth and development. Stress is indeed one of the biggest killers and it is something that can attack and affect us each and every day. So what can be done to help achieve long lasting relief from day to day stress?
Acupuncture and Stress Relief
Most individuals who receive acupuncture treatments on a regular basis will tell you time and time again that the treatments leave them feeling calm and relaxed. People who get regular acupuncturist treatments also seem to deal with the big and small stresses of day to day life with greater ease.
A few years ago a study was published in the Journal of Endocrinology that helped to shed some light on the beneficial effects acupuncture has on stress and how the mind and body deal with it. The study looked closely at the effect of acupuncture on rats that were exposed to highly stressful situations every day for ten days. Rats treated with acupuncture before the 10 day study began had much lower levels of all the detrimental stress hormones than the rats that received no acupuncture. Acupuncture given after the study also helped the rats with prior treatment recover more quickly.
Human bodies can illicit the same response to stress and anxiety than the rats in the study did and we often feel stressed-out after just one or two troublesome situations. After ten days of stressful events most people feel very stressed, anxious, or depressed. Our adrenal glands increase stress hormone production when we feel stressed, and the body can quickly become accustomed to high levels of stress and the associated hormonal response as the condition become chronic. High levels in stress hormone levels- usually brought on by trying to force yourself to ignore stressful triggers- can lead to anxiety, sleep problems, fatigue, frequent infections, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, acid reflux, weight gain, and chronic pain, depression, among many others.
Acupuncture for Anxiety and Depression
In the vast majority of people, the emotional symptoms that are presented as a result of chronic stress are the ones most easily seen and are often the most troubling and most harmful. Depression and anxiety can lead to problems with memory, recall abilities, attitude, motivation, and outlook on life. Fortunately, acupuncture and many other forms of homeopathic medicine have proven to be effective at treating both anxiety and depression. Many studies conducted throughout the past ten years, by a wide range of studies and organizations, have demonstrated that acupuncture offers an amazing array of benefits and help when it comes to the treating of anxiety disorders. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, commonly used for patients with anxiety and depression, can also benefit from acupuncture treatment routines. Some studies have even found that acupuncture can be as effective at alleviating the symptoms of depression and other mental disorders caused by stress as counselling or antidepressant medication alone.
Conclusion Research is still ongoing but thus far it is promising, and seems to be showing that multiple treatment options for anxiety and depression can benefit from the addition of acupuncture. If counseling and normal medication do not seem to be working, or if you want to consider the benefits of a more holistic approach, then acupuncture might be just what you are looking for to help you with your stress levels. Call our office to see if a treatment is right for you.