Recent research has suggested that anything up to 30% of the global population could be suffering from some form of anxiety. Medical professionals use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual to diagnose and treat various psychological conditions and the latest edition of it lists 13 sub-classifications ranging from shortness of breath and varying heart rate up to full-blown panic attacks.
According to the most current evidence, acupuncture is a useful and effective treatment for anxiety. Dr John McDonald, PhD, and Dr Stephen Janz published the Acupuncture Evidence Project in 2017 which is an up to date review of the evidence in favour of the use of acupuncture for a variety of different health problems. Their evidence included a review of over 400 randomised patients in 2016 which concluded that the effects of acupuncture for treating anxiety had been shown to be “significant” when compared with conventional treatments.
The largest of these studies involved 120 patients and found that acupuncture had a large effect in reducing anxiety and depression compared with drugs or psychotherapy, with more than twice the reduction of symptoms.
Another review in 2018 found that all 13 studies which were included reported “an anxiety decrease for their treatment group relative to the control groups.” Three of the control groups used drugs.
When the body is under stress, an area of the brain called the hypothalamus releases neurochemicals, and the research has shown that acupuncture can have a calming effect on this response. It has also been shown to increase the release of endorphins, which are the body’s own “feel good” hormones which help to regulate both physical and emotional response to stress including pain, heart rate, blood pressure, and digestion.
Here at Acubody we have been using acupuncture in North London to help with stress and anxiety for some time now and with some considerable success. In particular, we have found acupuncture to be beneficial in cases of infertility. Stress and anxiety can both be a major factor for infertility in women and low sperm count in men, and patients who have been trying unsuccessfully to conceive have been able to after a course of acupuncture treatment.
It is also worth noting that Chinese Herbal Medicine can be used along with acupuncture to deepen effectiveness in a great deal of conditions including stress and anxiety and fertility disorders. Treatments are always written bespoke for a patient, just as an acupuncture prescription may be different in two different people with the same condition, so a different herbal formula may also be prescribed. Herbs Commonly used might include Curcumin species, Yu Jin or Jiang huang, Bupleurum (Chai Hu), Albizzia bark (He Huan Pi) or Rose flowers (Mei Gui Hua). Both Duncan and Inbal can offer you integrated acupuncture and herbal treatment.