Treating Stress and Anxiety with Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine
We all go through periods in our life where stress and anxiety tend to take over and affect the quality of our life and happiness. For the most part, most of us tend to deal with these issues by either ignoring them or continuing our daily routines, or by taking prescription medication given to us by our M.D’s.
The purpose and goal of this article is to inform the reader, (you) that there are always alternative ways to treating our stress and anxiety. Don’t allow yourself to fall into a lifestyle where anxiety and stress are part of your daily routine. This is not normal, and in no way should be accepted. When we are healthy and stress is short-lived, we are usually able to recover without too much wear and tear to our overall health. However, when the stress is extreme, or if it lasts a long time, our emotional health, and ultimately our physical health begin to suffer.
Q: If one doesn’t want to take pharmaceutical drugs? Are these alternative routes to treating these conditions without drugs safe and or painless?
A: The answer to these questions is YES!
Before I begin, I’d like to inform the reader that Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture pain therapy is only one of the many alternative routs. One has to realize that we live in a world of abundance today and there are many forms of treatment out there that are not given through media or the conventional pop world. One has to seek alternative means of treatment and discover what works for them.
From an Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine perspective…
Stress, anxiety, depression or any other strong emotion interrupts our body’s internal chemistry if experienced for long periods of time. If these emotions are chronic they begin to cause our body to fall off balance and cause our body to function incorrectly. According to Chinese medical theory, energy flows through our body through a network of “roads”, almost like a highway system. Stress, anxiety, depression, anger or any intense emotion acts like a traffic jam, blocking the free flow of energy in the body. For example, many people who are very stressed out complain of upper back, shoulder and neck pain. This is because stress is causing tension in those areas, blocking the free flow of blood, oxygen, fluids and energy, causing pain, tightness, and often leading to headaches.
In a highway system, when there is road construction or an accident, traffic may be also backed up on other secondary roads that feed into or out of the affected area. This is true in the body as well. Stress may affect many other parts of the body, most notably digestion, the ability to sleep, pain conditions, and blood pressure. Stress and anxiety can also aggravate an already troublesome health condition.
Through acupuncture, acupuncture therapy, Chinese medicine and good acupuncturists these energy blockages can be addressed. Acupuncture points serve as the on and off ramps to the energy highway, and can help energy and blood flow smoothly, and alleviate not only the symptoms of stress and anxiety, but the stress and anxiety itself.
From a Western viewpoint…
Acupuncture works to alleviate stress by releasing natural pain-killing chemicals in the brain, called endorphins. In addition, acupuncture improves circulation of blood throughout the body, which oxygenates the tissues and cycles out cortisol and other waste chemicals. The calming nature of acupuncture also decreases heart rate, lowers blood pressure and relaxes the muscles, which in turn cause a decrease in our stress and anxiety levels.
Unfortunately because Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs are not part of our everyday culture here in the United States, it is not as widely accepted in the medical field even though is has astronomical effects on maintaining and essentially treating stress and anxiety. But remember, there are many forms of treatment out there in the world of abundance, and it would be considered a true disservice to oneself if they chose to limit themselves to only conventional pharmaceuticals.
Before I end this article, a few key things one can do to decrease stress and anxiety levels are:
- Eating a healthy and balanced diet. Our food is an extremely important role player in our stress and anxiety levels.
- Keeping hydrated. Staying hydrated is extremely important in maintaining our body’s equilibrium.
- Exercise, Exercise, Exercise. This is probably one of the most important factors in maintaining our stress and anxiety levels. Our exercise should be a combination of deep stretching, cardiovascular, and weight bearing exercises.