Anxiety is a common disorder, or mental illness, defined by feelings of uneasiness, worry, and fear. It is common for everyone to experience bouts at various times. However people with anxiety disorders feel an inappropriate amount of anxiety, which is greater and more frequent than what might be considered reasonable.

There are 13 different sub-classifications of anxiety disorders listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, with symptoms and physical manifestations varying considerably. From shortness of breath and variations in heart rate, to full blown and debilitating panic attacks, headaches, pain and insomnia. Anxiety is a complex, pervasive condition that is generally treated using medication.

Acudetox for AnxietyGenerally people who are prone to anxiety disorders have anxious personalities that make them susceptible to stress. Others have risk factors for anxiety disorders that include trauma, stress due to illness, stress buildup (Stress does not go away, it accumulates.). And still others have mental health disorders such as depression, drug or alcohol abuse, or having blood relatives with anxiety disorders.

Anxiety signs and symptoms can be the first indicators of conditions including:

  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Thyroid problems, such as hyperthyroidism
  • Respiratory disorders, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma
  • Drug or alcohol abuse or withdrawal
  • Chronic pain or (IBS) irritable bowel syndrome

Anxiety & Evidence For Acupuncture

Auricular acupuncture has been found to be an effective way to restore balance in the body (of Yin and Yang), which can alleviate emotional disorders of stress and anxiety. It is a natural way to treat anxiety; working faster than therapy and keeps you drug-free. When acupuncture is effective, symptoms lessen after the first few visits, and practitioners are confident it attacks the problem at its roots.

Acupuncture balances the Qi energy or life force that, like blood in the circulatory system, flows through the body’s pathways or meridians. By inserting tiny needles into and around specific points, acudetox practitioners help allow the body’s energy flow to re-balanced.
Acupuncture can be used for treating mood swings. It can also be used to treat pain by stimulating nerves, muscles, and connective tissue. This boosts the body’s natural painkillers and increases blood flow.

Studies

In a study published online in October 2013 in the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies, students who underwent a 20-minute acupuncture session were found to have less anxiety and better memory immediately afterward than those who didn’t have acupuncture.

Anxiety Treated With AcuDetox‘According to the most up to date evidence, acupuncture is an effective treatment for anxiety. In 2017, The Acupuncture Evidence Project, co-authored by Dr John McDonald, PhD and Dr Stephen Janz,1 was published, providing an up-to-date comparative review of the clinical and scientific evidence for acupuncture. This comprehensive document, updating two previous reviews, determined that acupuncture is moderately effective in treating anxiety according to high level evidence.2 Their evidence included a 2016 systematic review with over 400 randomised patients that concluded that ‘the effects from acupuncture for treating anxiety have been shown to be significant as compared to conventional treatments.’3 The largest of these studies, which included 120 randomized patients, found that acupuncture had a large effect on reducing anxiety and depression compared to conventional treatment involving pharmalogical approaches and psychotherapy, with over twice the reduction in symptoms.4

A more recent systematic review published in 2018 found that all 13 included studies “reported an anxiety decrease for their treatment group relative to the control groups.” Three of these studies used pharmaceuticals as controls.5 ‘ (Source)

The conventional treatment of anxiety primarily involves some combination pharmacological and psychological interventions.

There are several medications that are prescribed for anxiety, either singularly or in combination. According to recent research, around 50% of patients treated with pharmaceuticals have an ‘inadequate response,’ meaning that their symptoms are not alleviated to clinically significant levels or that the patient experiences adverse side effects.

Behavioural Approach

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and mindfulness-based CBT are two other popular and effective forms of conventional treatment and may be prescribed as standalone therapies, or in combination with medications. CBT is a ‘talking therapy’ that aims to overcome inaccurate or negative thought patterns. this has been found to have had a moderate to large effect on reducing anxiety from a variety of causes.

When the body is under stress, an area of the brain called the hypothalamus releases neurochemicals, and research shows that acupuncture can calm this response.

Acupuncture has been shown to improve the body’s ability to cope with stress through improving HRV (Heart Rates Variability). Acupuncture has also been shown to increase the release of endorphins, the body’s own ‘feel-good’ chemicals, which play an important role in the regulation of physical and emotional stress responses such as pain, heart rate, blood pressure and digestive function.

All of these acupuncture mechanisms have a direct effect on reducing anxiety.
Studies show that acupuncture is more effective than pharmacotherapy and comparable to talking therapy, making it a helpful referral choice.

Few procedures work 100 percent of the time. That includes acupuncture, but it does have benefits that conventional treatments like psychotherapy and medication do not.

If you’re already receiving treatment for anxiety, consider adding acupuncture to your current regimen. If you decide it works for you, you can work with your doctor to weaned off your medication.

People treated with acupuncture often see results after one session, and the results improve with continued treatment. AcuDetox auricular acupuncture is particularly helpful for people who want to limit or stop drug use — prescription or otherwise. Because it regulates the body’s chemical balance naturally, acupuncture can even prevent people from needing medication at all.

If you’re suffering from anxiety, you can schedule an appointment for an auricular acupuncture consultation and AcuDetox session.

 


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References

1. McDonald J, Janz S. The Acupuncture Evidence Project: A Comparative Literature Review. Australian Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Association Ltd. 2017.
2. Bazzan AJ, Zabrecky G, Monti DA, Newberg AB. Current evidence regarding the management of mood and anxiety disorders using complementary and alternative medicine. Expert Rev Neurother. 2014;14:411- 23.
3. Goyata SL, Avelino CC, Santos SV, Souza Junior DI, Gurgel MD, Terra FS. Effects from acupuncture in treating anxiety: integrative review. Rev Bras Enferm. 2016 Jun;69(3):602-9.
4. Arvidsdotter, T., Marklund, B., & Taft, C. (2013). Effects of an integrative treatment, therapeutic acupuncture and conventional treatment in alleviating psychological distress in primary care patients–a pragmatic randomized controlled trial. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 13(1), 308. http://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6882-13-308
5. Amorim, D., Amado, J., Brito, I., Fiuza, S. M., Clinical, N. A. T. I., 2018. (n.d.). Acupuncture and electroacupuncture for anxiety disorders: A systematic review of the clinical research. Elsevier. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctcp.2018.01.008