Winter has been beautiful. However, who is now sick of shoveling? And careening down ice coated staircases? And feeling like it will never end? The other big question…have you been feeling really blah? Acupuncture can help with back pain, neck pain, headaches, and insomnia, but did you also know it can help with depression and anxiety?
Depression affects one in ten Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. How does one know if they’re depressed? When someone is feeling sad, hopeless, discouraged, unmotivated or disinterested for over two weeks or these feelings start to interfere with their activities and duties it could be a major depressive episode. For men, depression can also show up as irritability, anger, or self-destructive behavior. There are a large number of causes for depression, including genetics, chemical imbalances, hormone issues and other medical conditions. Depression may also be the result of a “dysregulation” of the seven emotions — joy, anger, worry, contemplation, grief, fear and shock. This is where acupuncture can really help.
If acupuncture is able to reestablish a balance among these emotions, the symptoms of depression are relieved. Treating depression with acupuncture has a positive and holistic effect on depressed patients, and avoids the potential side effects of traditional medication.
Also, for some, change of seasons can trigger depression. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) affects over ten million of us in the United States each year, two-thirds of which are female, but males may have symptoms that are more severe. For many, the symptoms start in the fall and carry on through the winter.
Ranging widely in severity, anxiety and depression are often found to occur together and have overlapping symptoms. Acupuncture is a safe and natural way to help with mild, short-term cases of both anxiety and depression. In the United States, anxiety disorders affect about 40 million adults — women twice more than men. In Western medicine, Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a psychological and physiological state characterized by excessive, exaggerated anxiety and worry about every day or upcoming life events with no obvious reasons for the worry. People with symptoms of GAD tend to always expect disaster and seemingly can’t stop worrying about things such as health, money, family, work, or school, and the worry is often unrealistic or out of proportion for the situation. Therefore, daily life becomes a constant state of worry, fear, and dread. Eventually, the anxiety dominates the person’s thinking and eventually interferes with daily functioning.
In more severe cases that are interfering with your daily activities and responsibilities over the long term, acupuncture can work in conjunction with other treatments such as therapy or medication, helping to maximize the effectiveness of the treatment and minimize side effects.
Acupuncture often gives an immediate improvement on the symptoms present, as well as a deeper improvement on the underlying causes, Acupuncture works well with diet corrections, supplementation, as well as necessary medications. Meditation and exercise are often important additions to a healthy approach. Also…be sure not to get dehydrated. Beings made mostly of water need it to be happy and healthy! Breathing exercises are also very helpful. Brisk walking or another form of exercise is very beneficial to those suffering from anxiety. Many people find yoga, tai qi or qiqong to be very helpful, as they are excellent forms of mind-body exercise that can improve the ability to control both anxiety and depression. Practicing these arts in conjunction with regular acupuncture treatments help provide the foundation for positive change.
Acupuncture helps you by bringing your body into balance, giving it a chance to rest, relax and heal.
Be kind to yourself and remember, Spring is coming!
For more information, visit us at www.ctacupuncture.com
Give us an old fashioned call!