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CAN ACUPUNCTURE HELP ANXIETY?

Updated: Apr 27

Discover how acupuncture for anxiety is nowadays more and more accepted and suggested as a natural medicine from the medical world too as an effective method to lower your stress levels and any related symptoms.


ACUPuncture-pressure-point-on-face-for-stress-anxiety

CAN ACUPUNCTURE HELP ANXIETY?


Chances are, you know someone with anxiety — or have it yourself — especially since it affects approximately 25% of people in the UK. The World Health Organisation estimates that by 2030 depression will be the leading cause of disability in the world.


Symptoms of anxiety vary a lot but can be summed as the excessive worrying that’s hard to control and often impacts daily life.

Some people may experience insomnia, irritability, poor concentration, sweating, headaches and migraines, palpitations, aches and pains, shortness of breath, low self-esteem, digestive problems such as irritable bowel syndrome, nausea and diarrhoea.



There are several treatment options for anxiety these days, from talk therapy to natural supplements, and in the last years more and more people are trying acupuncture for anxiety as research has found that acupuncture could be very beneficial to those suffering from chronic stress.


Even The World Health Organisation suggest acupuncture for anxiety and depression as a clinically effective, safe and cost-effective method for anxiety and depression.

Acupuncture for anxiety is safe to use in the long-term, avoiding any drug-related side-effects, but it can be safely combined with conventional treatments such as psycho-educational therapy or medication, possibly enhancing their beneficial effects and reducing unwanted side-effects. (Courbasson 2007 and Yuan 2007).





HOW CAN ACUPUNCTURE HELP WITH ANXIETY?


Acupuncture is an ancient therapy rooted in Traditional Chinese Medicine which believes there are more than 2,000 acupuncture points in the human body, connected by pathways or meridians that create an energy flow. When this flow experiences disruptions, health issues may occur, and so acupuncture tries to restore it and regain optimal balance.


Acupuncture for anxiety has been shown to be have some effects of easing symptoms ranging mental worrying to digestive issues to headache and migraine and so on.


Stress activates the sympathetic nervous system, the so called “fight-or-flight” mode, in which all the blood flow goes to the limbs, and all other processes — such as digestion and healing of tissues/organs — are put on hold. On the contrary Acupuncture promotes the opposing parasympathetic nervous system, which we can define as our “resting and healing” mode. Acupuncture seems to stimulate the production of endogenous opioids affecting the autonomic nervous system and so it can initiate the relaxation response, putting your body in healing mode and reducing anxiety.


Besides specialised Acupuncture for anxiety seems to affect neurotransmitter levels such as like serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin, and anandamide, hence altering the brain’s mood chemistry to help to combat negative affective states (Lee 2009; Samuels 2008; Zhou 2008; Yuan 2007)


That’s how acupuncture for anxiety ‘hits the reset button’ and allow people to immediately start to breathe slower and deeper, relaxing muscles, promote digestion and slow the hear rate too.



ACUPuncture-pressure-point-on-hand-for-stress-anxiety

DOES ACUPUNCTURE FOR ANXIETY HAVE ANY RISKS?


Acupuncture for anxiety won’t make your anxiety worse. Possible side effects of this treatment could be a little soreness, which usually goes away within a few hours.


Also, some people suffering from health conditions such as a bleeding disorder like hemophilia or who has a pacemaker should avoid acupuncture for anxiety.


If you already follow any ongoing anxiety treatment, especially with prescribed medications, it is very important you continue with it, unless your doctor agrees to stop such medications.



WHAT TO EXPECT FROM OUR ACUPUNCTURE FOR ANXIETY TREATMENT


We will take an in-depth consultation asking which symptoms bother you the most and how they affect your life. We will also go through your medical history and ask about any medications you take, and any other health concerns you may have.


Depending on your circumstances, the acupuncturist will decide the pressure points where to insert the needles, which may vary every time, depending on the symptoms presented at each session. The needles are usually left in from 10 to 30 minutes before carefully removing them.


At the end of the session You will probably be more relaxed but people often don’t feel instant gratification as most acupuncture for anxiety treatments need to be repeated few times, depending on the severity of the symptoms, and that’s why we offer up to 20% discount on treatment packages. So expect gradual changes, more subtle but surely with effects lasting more long-term than anxiety drugs.



WHAT ARE THE BEST ACUPUNCTURE POINTS FOR ANXIETY?


The best acupuncture points for anxiety are usually on the scalp, ear, and various body points. At A to Zen therapies we also offer a specific acupuncture for anxiety treatment called NADA protocol, which includes five points in each ear, and different studies have shown that it greatly relieves conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression, and insomnia.”



ear-acupuncture-pressure-points-for-stress-anxiety


In acupuncture the ear is considered a microsystem, just like the foot is for reflexology, so you can support the whole body from the ear.


We also often use points on top of the hands, feet and on the face as these acupuncture points for anxiety are great to calm the mind. These body parts have so many proprioceptors, therefore are really highly reactive to stress, so stimulating these points, helps the the body to relax and anxiety tends to reduce.



HOW OFTEN TO HAVE ACUPUNCTURE FOR ANXIETY?


As we mentioned above, acupuncture for anxiety usually works on a cumulative level so it often requires repetition to make a sustained change, but of course this entirely depends on the individual, as each patient is different.

The number of treatments usually depends on how long-standing and severe the issue may be.



WHAT CAN YOU DO AFTER AN ACUPUNCTURE FOR ANXIETY TREATMENT?


Our acupuncturists may suggest lifestyle changes depending on your symptoms to implement gradually in your life. Our goal with acupuncture is not to replace a function, but to restore a function, and this usually takes time, patience and determination.


People who continue to engage in unhealthy lifestyles choices that contribute to generate anxious states, will see less benefits than those, who, alongside acupuncture for anxiety treatments, will start to look at their life in a more holistic way and perform activities that help to ground the mind, such as meditation, qigong exercises so that you take charge of your own healing process, of which the benefits cannot be overstated.”


 

OUR ACUPUNCTURE FOR ANXIETY TREATMENT IN LONDON

Book today your first appointment, and make anxiety and chronic stress a distant memory as you embrace a new life of tranquility and balance.



We look forward to hearing your thoughts about this article! Please share your experience if you had acupuncture for anxiety with us and whether you believe acupuncture can help anxiety symptoms.


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