Healing from Anxiety and Depression
When you suffer from anxiety or depression, your whole life is
affected. Your relationships, your ability to focus and perform
at work, your motivation to get things done, your enjoyment of
your favorite activities, your energy level, your ability to sleep
well, your physical health, and your self-esteem all suffer. You
may be plagued by a sense of regret, frustration, hopelessness,
fatigue, uneasiness, or dread. You may also experience
uncomfortable symptoms like headaches, muscle and joint
aches, or digestive issues such as nausea or IBS. At their
worst, anxiety and depression can make every day feel like a
pointless, exhausting struggle.
Fortunately, acupuncture can be incredibly helpful in healing
from anxiety and depression. From the perspective of Chinese
medicine, physical, mental, and emotional health are all completely interrelated.Each of the body's energy pathways corresponds to an emotion as well as a physical organ. Treating points along a particular meridian helps to restore balance to its corresponding emotion and thought patterns.
Acupuncture theory holds that no emotion is inherently bad; each one serves a purpose and is appropriate to express at certain times. For example, healthy fear keeps you safe by allowing you to recognize and protect yourself from danger. Well-directed anger gets you moving when you need to create a change. Appropriate grief keeps you in touch with those things that are most valuable in life. Ideally, you experience each emotion at its proper time, process it, and move on. Sometimes life circumstances are so overwhelming, however, that you become stuck continually experiencing certain emotions. When this occurs, acupuncture can help restore your ability to process your difficult feelings and let go of stuck emotional states like anxiety and depression.
For example, the Kidney and Bladder meridians correspond to the emotion of fear. If you experience a very frightening event or are exposed to many smaller threats over a long period of time, your experience of fear may become imbalanced. You may begin to feel that you are in danger even in relatively safe situations and thus live with a constant sense of anxiety or dread. When we bring the Kidney and Bladder energies back into balance through acupuncture, you are able to recognize danger when it arises and to relax and feel safe the rest of the time.
Each person's anxiety or depression is unique, so I offer a highly individualized approach. When you come in for acupuncture, we will discuss the life events, thoughts, and emotions that are contributing to your particular experience. Then we will design a treatment plan that will help you to move through your specific areas of mental and emotional stuckness by restoring balance to their corresponding organs and energy pathways. In addition to acupuncture treatments, I offer practical tools and strategies that you can use on your own to further your healing process.
Over the years I have treated many people with anxiety and depression and have seen great results. My patients report feeling less anxious and depressed during and after their acupuncture treatments. I strongly recommend that my patients with anxiety and depression receive professional counseling, and they generally find that acupuncture helps make their psychotherapy more productive. In some cases and with their doctors' supervision, they are also able to reduce or eliminate some or all of their medications. In cases where anxiety or depression is connected to an injury, physical ailment, or pain pattern, acupuncture carries the added benefit of being able to address physical, mental, and emotional symptoms simultaneously.