Acupuncture for Stress Relief: The Key Benefits to Know : How prevalent is stress among Americans? According to The American Institute of Stress:
- 77% of Americans regularly experience physical symptoms caused by stress
- 48% of people report having trouble sleeping due to stress
- 54% of Americans claim stress caused a fight between loved ones
Stress affects the whole body. It leads to a lack of sleep, depression, memory loss, and concentration problems. Stress wreaks havoc on the digestive system. It strains cardiovascular health can cause severe weight loss or gain.
It’s difficult, and maybe impossible, to get rid of stress in your life. But we can control how they manage stress to help them lead healthier lives.
Acupuncture for stress relief is a popular treatment. Let’s explore what acupuncture is and the amazing health benefits it has to offer.
What Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture involves inserting numerous thin needling into your skin. It’s a popular form of alternative Chinese medicine.
Most practicers use acupuncture to balance energy flow or life force (known as chi or qi). These forces flow through designated pathways in your body. The needles are inserted into specific points along these pathways. The insertion allows energy flows to re-balance.
Western medicine explains acupuncture points as areas that stimulate nerves, muscles, and connective tissues. Putting pressure in these specific regions spurs your body’s natural painkillers.
The type of acupuncture treatment you receive depends on where you’re feeling pain. An initial treatment and evaluation take about 60 minutes. Follow-up visits typically last 30 minutes. Most people receive one to two treatments per week. The number of acupuncture sessions depends on how widespread and severe your pain is.
Acupuncture for Stress Relief
We shouldn’t take stress lightly. Long-term stress leads to mental and physical health complications. To manage and control stress, many people turn to acupuncture.
Stress prevents positive energy throughout the body. Acupuncture applies pressure to designated areas. The pressure stimulate better energy flow and eases symptoms of stress.
Acupuncture targets specific zones of your body. Doing so stimulates your body’s endorphin release. The release of endorphins lowers your body’s cortisol, your stress hormone, level. At the same time, the treatment increases happy hormones like serotonin and dopamine.
The sympathetic nervous system activates under stress and is responsible for a person’s fight or flight response. The parasympathetic system is responsible for stimulating rest and digestion throughout the body. Acupuncture balances these systems to lower widespread stress and promote whole-body healing.
The Acupuncture Evidence Project in 2017 determined a link between stress and acupuncture. The study states the effects of acupuncture for treating anxiety are significant compared to conventional stress treatments.
Lower stress leads to widespread benefits. It improves mental clarity, focus, and energy levels. Less stress elevates digestive functions and lowers the risk of weight gain.
Other Benefits of Acupuncture
Aside from lowering stress, acupuncture has other key benefits. Professional acupuncture treatments relieve joint pain and prevent headaches. Acupuncture creates a stronger immune system and aids in addiction recovery.
Relieve Joint Pain
Joint pain is the result of inflammation. It stems from injuries, poor nutrition, or chronic autoimmune disorders. Joint pain can occur at any stage of your life, but it’s more common as we age.
Acupuncture can lead to reduced joint pain in your:
Acupuncture works to naturally bring your whole body back into balance. By stimulating pressure points, acupuncture releases neurotransmitters that reduce pain sensation. Acupuncture treatments also inhibit pain proteins that cause inflammation. The result is less discomfort in your joints and increased relaxation in your muscles.
The Arthritis Foundation found that after 26 weeks of acupuncture treatments, arthritis patients felt less pain. The patients also experienced increase mobility in their joints.
Headache and migraine relief is another acupuncture advantage. Acupuncture triggers a healing response throughout your body. It stimulates your immune system and enhances circulation. This results in fewer headaches and migraines.
Acupuncture treatments administered to migraine patients resulted in 50% fewer headaches. Fifty-nine percent of patients claimed acupuncture effects lasted longer than six months.
Improve Your Immune System
The positive effects acupuncture has on the body are widespread. Acupuncture treatments stimulate the immune system to enhance overall health.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, our immune systems are known as Wei Qi. Wei Qi protects the body and prevents attacks from external pathogens.
When your Wei Qi is strong, your body fights off infections, and you remain healthy. A weak Wei Qi leads to illness, infection, injury, and chronic pain. Acupuncture treatments stimulate energy flows and result in a more powerful Wei Chi.
Western medicine explains acupuncture increases the number of T cells in our bodies. T cells destroy bacteria and viruses. When your T cell count increases, your immune system improves.
The increased cellular response from acupuncture can last for several days. Therefore, regular acupuncture sessions correlate with better immune health.
Decrease Addictive Behaviors
Drug and alcohol addiction create body-wide imbalances. Acupuncture can restore balance and manage symptoms of addiction.
Acupuncture stimulates dopamine production. Dopamine manages physical and emotional pain that occurs during withdrawal. Higher dopamine levels aid in addiction recovery and lower the risk of a relapse.
A study on smoking and nicotine addiction discovered that the combination of acupuncture and rehabilitation education significantly reduced smoking in 141 adults.
Side Effects of Acupuncture
Acupuncture risks and side effects are low. The most significant problems stem from dirty needles. As long as you work with a certified acupuncture practitioner, you don’t need to worry.
Most patients do not experience side effects of acupuncture. The most common acupuncture side effects include minor:
If you’re are pregnant, you should not receive acupuncture. Treatments may stimulate labor, which could result in premature childbirth.
People taking blood thinners should not undergo acupuncture. The treatment is not recommended for those using a pacemaker. Acupuncture needles can interfere with the pacemaker’s function.
Boost Your Health
If you’re experiencing chronic anxiety, depression, and fatigue, consider acupuncture for stress relief. Acupuncture treatments provide whole-body relief from inflammation and pain. Acupuncture enhances mental clarity, digestion, and can even aid in addiction recovery.
We update our site with informative tips for women looking to live their healthiest life.
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