Acupuncture is becoming a prevalent treatment as a natural pain reliever in our modern world. Many people find it effective for relieving stress, and it’s a great alternative to prescription medications with many unwanted side effects and high costs. This article will discuss the many benefits of acupuncture for stress.
The use of acupuncture was developed in China around 2,500 years ago and is based on the concept that energy called qi (pronounced “chee”) flows through specific pathways or meridians located throughout the body.
Acupuncture uses very thin needles to stimulate one of these points to unblock and restore the flow of qi. In addition to its use as alternative medicine, acupuncture has also been used as a form of complementary medicine alongside conventional western therapies such as medication and surgery.
A study published in 2009 by the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that when combined with other forms of treatments, acupuncture may be more effective than either treatment alone.
Acupuncture For Stress
Acupuncture has been proven to help lower stress levels in many patients. The practice is becoming increasingly popular among individuals looking to reduce stress naturally and quickly. In addition, it is a great way to combat the negative effects of stress and anxiety.
In a study, acupuncture reduced the production of two main stress-related neurotransmitters in rats. These neurotransmitters include NPY, which is produced by the sympathetic nervous system and is associated with the fight-or-flight response.
The study showed that after a standard acupuncture session, NPY levels were reduced in rats, indicating that acupuncture helps to reduce stress. In humans, one of the largest causes of stress is work. For example, the stressors in an office environment are mental and physical, and expectations are also high.
A recent systematic review examined acupuncture’s benefits in treating anxiety disorders. Although several reports show acupuncture can decrease anxiety, the effectiveness of this treatment remains unclear. To address this issue, researchers searched for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that examined the effectiveness of acupuncture on anxiety symptoms.
The included trials included English and Chinese studies, and the primary outcome variable was the extent of anxiety symptoms. Secondary outcomes included dropout rate and side effects. In addition, random-effects modeling was used to pool the effect sizes of each acupuncture treatment.
The treatment has been shown to improve symptoms without forcing patients to give up their medication. It may even improve the therapeutic effects of these drugs.
Researchers at Georgetown University found that acupuncture can reduce side effects and improve the effectiveness of medications. For this reason, acupuncture has become a popular alternative medicine treatment for patients with anxiety and stress.
In a review of the research, multiple randomized controlled trials were performed. These studies compared the effects of acupuncture with control treatments for patients with generalized anxiety disorder. Of these studies, 20 were included, with 18 in Chinese.
The results of a meta-analysis showed that acupuncture significantly reduced the symptoms of anxiety and stress in patients compared to control groups. Additionally, the participants reported a good experience with acupuncture.
Lowers blood pressure
Acupuncture is an alternative therapy for patients suffering from hypertension. A recent study found that acupuncture reduced blood pressure for patients during treatment with minimal side effects. Therefore, acupuncture may be attractive to patients who are interested in avoiding drug therapy and who are attracted to its spiritual and therapeutic values.
One of the first studies to test whether acupuncture for stress lowers blood pressure looked at the effects of acupuncture on hypertension in outpatients. The researchers evaluated 22 published studies. Four studies reported a temporary drop in blood pressure, but most were of poor quality and had limited findings.
Further, the researchers noted that acupuncture’s effectiveness might depend on how it regulates hormone levels and enzymes. Acupuncture may also increase antioxidant enzymes, reducing the effects of oxidative stress.
However, patients should be aware that the practice requires a significant time commitment. Patients were required to schedule three or five acupuncture sessions a week, which took between 30 minutes and additional time for transportation.
Acupuncture for stress works by stimulating pressure points on specific body parts. The stimulation of the nervous system releases endorphins, which help relieve pain, improve range of motion, and promote circulation of local tissue. In addition, acupuncture helps release dopamine, a neurohormone involved in easing emotional tension. It is effective for a range of conditions, including muscle tension, stiffness, and stress.
When acupuncture is used for stress, specific pressure points on the body trigger responses in the brain, which relax muscles and make stress fade away. Acupuncture is holistic, so each treatment is personalized and tailored to the individual patient.
The attention received is mindful, resulting in a feeling of relaxation. Acupuncture is an excellent outlet for treating anxiety naturally. It can be a life-changing experience for both patients and practitioners.
Lowers heart rate
A systematic review found that acupuncture reduces heart rate variability (HRV) in human and animal subjects. In particular, the low-frequency component of HRV is thought to represent a mechanistic pathway for global physiological regulation, and this theory is in accordance with the traditional medical approaches of East Asia. HRV is one of several parameters that indicate how effective acupuncture is.
Acupuncture for stress reduces heart rate by regulating the qi flow in associated channels and organs. Besides the needles, Chinese herbs can also accompany acupuncture treatments. Acupuncture also addresses diet and lifestyle factors to help the body manage stress. As a result, acupuncture for stress lowers heart rate and reduces blood pressure. The treatment also reduces the symptoms of stress.
Regulates HPA axis hormones
Acupuncture has been shown to help the body respond to stress by regulating the HPA axis hormones, which control the “fight or flight” response. These hormones regulate blood flow to the organs and systems that are important for survival during stressful situations. The Journal of Endocrinology published a study on rats that showed acupuncture decreased the secretion of HPA hormones.
Although no serious side effects are associated with acupuncture treatment, discussing this treatment’s potential benefits and risks with your healthcare provider is still important. Acupuncture is safe and generally responds quickly. However, your anxiety level, personal constitution, and response to treatment will determine the number of sessions you require. Typically, one to two treatments are recommended.
While it is impossible to predict how much acupuncture will affect any given patient, some studies have shown that the procedure can reduce pain and improve function. Despite its promise, the adverse effects are minimal and temporary.
Most patients report experiencing mild pain after acupuncture sessions, and only a small number of them experience bruising around the site of the needles. However, some people experience a significant increase in back pain, which can indicate a problem with localized pain.
Acupuncture is becoming more popular in the United States, with 40 million adults suffering from anxiety disorders. Compared to medications and talk therapy, acupuncture has fewer side effects and is not limited to a single location.
Moreover, acupuncture requires fewer in-person sessions, which makes it a more affordable option. If you’re looking for a natural remedy for stress and anxiety, acupuncture may be a good alternative.