Overcoming Anxiety & Depression
Overcoming Anxiety & Depression
When I first opened my practice, the #1 issue I treated with acupuncture was pain. Now that #1 is anxiety, #2 is depression, and pain is #3. What changed?
Covid and everything related to it – doesn’t matter what side of the fence you are on. It doesn’t matter if you caught it or not! Covid changed life as we knew it in ways that most of us could not predict at all.
First, if you have actually caught Covid, it can impact you for months to years – now being called “long Covid.” The spike proteins from the disease preferentially attack the nerves, which is why you can experience symptoms ranging from loss of taste and smell to brain-fog to fatigue to pain. The inflammation of your nerves from the attack can really last especially if you have a stressful job/lifestyle, eat inflammatory food, are sedentary, etc. Acupuncture and anti-inflammatory supplements can really make a difference if you are being affected this way.
Second, the rest of it. The political stuff, the societal changes, continued supply chain issues, the blahblahblah you name it. All of this has led to an overall rise in our “resting stress levels.” And it has broken a lot of people – that’s why we are seeing such a mental health crisis as a nation with a precipitous rise in the need for mental healthcare, which we are desperately in short supply.
All of this is to say that if you are struggling with anxiety or depression, we can try to help. (The most important thing to do is get set up with a therapist. If you have even a tiny inkling you need to talk to someone, get on a wait-list NOW. Although Steve and I are awesome, we are not licensed therapists.)
In addition to therapy, there are tons of things you can do or take to try to ease your stress to help better manage anxiety and depression. In no particular order:
If you are a current patient, we can get you hooked up for “needles and a nap” ASAP. Acupuncture is very calming in its own right, but I also know a special set of acupoints from Dr. Sun’s protocol that are extra relaxing.
If you are new to the practice, please give us a call at 978-237-5106 and we can get you started with acupuncture! It is a very relaxing treatment. You can read more about acupuncture here.
Another bonus to acupuncture: if you are currently in therapy but feel “stuck” with your progress, sometimes the acupuncture can “unstick” you. When you are feeling anxious and/or depressed, you tend to carry that weight around with you physically as well. The acupuncture helps get your qi (body’s energy) moving, which can help release emotional trauma that has become stuck. I have had many patients say that they were finally address lingering issues that they had not felt ready to talk about with their therapist after a few sessions of acupuncture.
Some of you may have seen these or talked to Steve about them (or seen them online). They are little “baby needles” that are even thinner than regular needles and are super short. They are attached to basically a band-aid that can be stuck onto your skin over various acupoints. They very gently stimulate the points constantly over time so it’s like having continuous acupuncture.
There are nice calming acupoints on your back that help with emotions called the “Back-Shu Transport points.” I put these intradermals on the Heart, Pericardium (protective covering around the heart), Liver, and Gallbladder Back-Shu points because the Heart/Pericardium is traditionally related to anxiety while Liver/Gallbladder are traditionally linked to anger/depression.
These intradermal needles can be left on for 1-2 weeks. Basically, like a band-aid, they will eventually fall off and need to be replaced. I recommend taking them off for a day or two to let them “breathe” before replacing them. (If they become irritated or itchy, take them off immediately.)
Steve has had his intradermal needles on his back more-or-less since he started working for me 6 years ago. He always can feel the difference when I make him wait a day. He stated that as a result of the intradermals, he does not have to take as many supplements because his ambient anxiety levels are so much lower due to the needles.
If you want to try them, let us know! It is $15 for an application for current patients not doing acupuncture. If you are new to the practice, please give us a call at 978-237-5106 and we can get you started!
So many to choose from! The great thing about the variety of supplements is that we can try to find the best 1-2 products for your concerns. Getting to the root cause of your issue is the key. And sometimes you have to try a few products before you find the one(s) that work best for you.
Ashwagandha Forte – Ashwagandha (or Withania) is a traditional adaptogenic herb used to help you adapt better to stress, both physical and mental-emotional. Typically it is recommended for those people who are “wired but tired” – you want to go to sleep but you can’t because your brain won’t stop.
Nevaton Forte – this is what we call “herbal Xanax.” It is a stronger combination of herbs than Ashwagandha, so it can be used more as a “take it when you need it” rather than a daily. (Although, under extreme stress, you can safely take it daily.) Both Steve and I take Nevaton Forte any time we are worried that we will have trouble sleeping or before big events.
Min-Tran – this one is short for “mineral tranquilizer.” Almost 100% of Americans are deficient in minerals because of the terrible farming practices we have over here. You are at even higher risk of mineral deficiency if you drink a lot of reverse-osmosis processed water (it takes out all of the bad things AND good minerals). When you are deficient in minerals, it causes inflammation. So Min-Tran packs a 1-2- punch by giving you the minerals you need to put out that inflammation while calming at the same time. (Organically Bound Minerals or OBM is our regular mineral product.) It is our mild natural calmative for those people who are nervous and cannot relax.
Min-Chex – this is our stronger version of Min-Tran. It contains minerals and Orchex. It is great for people who get depressed, are nervous, or get very emotional easily.
Orchex – this is our strongest calming product. It is great if you are more on the “angry” side of the emotional spectrum.
Disclaimer: As always, consult your healthcare practitioner to see which supplements and their dosages would be best for you and your condition. All supplements are contraindicated during pregnancy and lactation unless otherwise directed by a qualified healthcare professional you are under current care with.
As always, please call 978-237-5106 to schedule your initial appointment!