Acupuncture and moxibustion have been used to help relieve the effects of mental and emotional ailments for a very long time.
We are currently facing challenging times for our mental health due to unforeseen events and isolation. Chinese medicine and acupuncture may offer you support during these times.
Now in modern times, there is research supporting its benefits in the field of neuropsychiatry in the areas of anxiety and depression.
Acupuncture could be beneficial for patients who can be resistant to conventional approaches (5). The research quality in this area has evolved in modern times, with more recent and better-elaborated research methods showing positive benefits with promising results (5,6). A recent review of the research literature concluded that both acupuncture and electro-acupuncture have valuable scientific evidence supporting their use for anxiety as it can yield positive outcomes with fewer side effects than conventional treatment (7).
In addition, auricular acupuncture can induce a relaxation effect for those who suffer anxiety (9) and in those undergoing pre-operative anxiety (10), with some authors proposing autonomic nervous system regulation as a possible effect mechanism (2).
In a single-blind randomised trial using the Hamilton Depression Rating Score (HMAD), researchers concluded that both acupuncture and moxibustion showed similar and positive benefits (3). Positive improvements were also seen in the efficacy score in a Score Symptoms Checklist 90 (4) The Symptom Checklist 90 Revised (SCL-90-R) is a self-report screening measure of general psychiatric symptomatology. Furthermore, HMAD scoring revealed that women seemed to have better beneficial outcomes than males (3). Even further, the induced positive effects against distress seemed to last even as long as 3 months after treatment (2).
Acupuncture may increase the level of melatonin and reduce anxiety, as seen under improvements in fatigue and depression scores (8). A systemic review revealed that both acupuncture and western medicine possessed the same statistical level in improving HMAD scores and that the combination of both therapies gives the most benefits (1,8).
If you would like more information about possible treatment applications, you can contact me through the contacts section on this website or by email at:
Practical health and wellness tips from a holistic, integrative Chinese medicine perspective.