Chinese Medicine in Treating Anxiety and Depression

Chinese Medicine views that we human beings (just like all other living organisms) are made of three different aspects: body, mind, and spirit. Physical symptoms may stem from mental/emotional/spiritual disorders; emotional issues are often being displayed as physical ailments as the body and mind are seamlessly woven together in one energy field. Therefore, treating emotional/mental issues only with medications, without addressing inter-related   physiological counterparts, is not only ineffective, but may exacerbate the conditions.

In Chinese medicine, the underlying causes of anxieties/depression differ drastically from one patient to another. Typically, Chinese medical practitioners look for “pattern disharmonies” in treating depression/anxiety patients. The most prominent pattern disharmonies in depression disorders are:

* Heart and Spleen Qi deficiency – Physical symptoms may include palpitations, insomnia, poor memory, lack of appetite, fatigue, poor digestion, and a pale tongue. Emotional symptoms include excessive worry and feeling timid.
* Heart Yin deficiency – Physical symptoms may include absentmindedness, dizziness, insomnia, low back soreness, dryness, sensations of heat, tinnitus, and a red tongue with little coating. Emotional symptoms include sensitivity and irritability. Yin deficiency is commonly seen during menopause.
* Excessive Phlegm – Physical symptoms may include obesity, feeling weighted down, congestion, dizziness, fatigue and a swollen tongue. Emotional symptoms include depression and feeling cloudy or experiencing dullness of thought.
* Liver Qi stagnation – Physical symptoms may include nausea, bloating, premenstrual symptoms, rib-side pain, belching and possibly insomnia. Emotional stress affects the liver and includes irritability, frustration, and anger.
* Liver and/or Heart fire – Fire is often caused by prolonged Liver Qi stagnation. Symptoms include a bitter taste in the mouth, headaches, ringing in the ears, dizziness, sores in the mouth, red eyes, red face and a quick temper.

Depending on pattern diagnosis, acupuncture protocols are determined to address the underlying causes. Generally, results with acupuncture and herbs are cumulative, improving week by week. Treatment begins with one or two sessions per week and tapers off as the condition improves.

Acupuncture and herbs are not only safe, but also effectively used together with anti-anxiety and anti-depressant medications. Many patients find these medications to be inadequate at completely resolving their symptoms. Others, together with their doctors, would like to wean themselves to lower dosages in order to decrease the occurrence of side effects. Most patients turn to acupuncture and herbs for a variety of reasons – mostly because of their clinical success.

Nutrition and Diet Tips for Anxiety and Depression

Whether it is anxiety or depression, when it comes to any physiological and/or emotional issues, I need to repeat myself: Stay away from three food items: Sugar, Wheat, and Dairies. All these foods create empty heat in the body, dampen the body, and block the energy flow. Just removing these foods for even one week can make a huge difference in one’s emotional landscape.

Foods Helping Anxiety/Depression

Asparagus, avocados, and berries

Garlic, onion, cinnamon, and honey

Cashews, walnuts, and sunflower seeds

Chamomile tea, and green tea

Oysters, and grass-fed beef

Nutritional Supplements Recommended for Anxiety/Depression

Fish oil

Vit D, Vit B12, Vit C

Calcium

Probiotics

5HTP

Theamine(GABA)

St. John’s Wort

Valerian Root

L Tryptophan

Note: I have successfully used the following Standard Process products in treating anxiety/depression patients:

B6-Niacynamide, Mineral Tranquilizer, Orchex, E-Poise, Zymex, Livaplex, and Calcium Lactae.

Alleviate Your Migraine and Headache Pain

Are you plagued by chronic headaches? More than 45 million Americans (one in six) suffer from chronic headaches, and 20 million of them are women. The pain that headache and migraine sufferers endure can impact every aspect of their lives.

Scientific research shows that acupuncture can be more effective than medication in reducing the severity and frequency of chronic headaches. Acupuncture is a formidable form of treatment for headaches, and it can offer powerful relief without the side effects that prescription and over-the-counter drugs can cause. Headaches and migraines, as well as their underlying causes, have been treated successfully with acupuncture and Oriental medicine for thousands of years.

migraine headache

Acupuncture and Oriental medicine do not recognize migraines and chronic headaches as one particular syndrome. Instead, there are a number of factors and meridians involved. For instance, if headaches are concentrated on the frontal aspect of forehead right above the eyes, we suspect imbalance in the bladder and liver meridians.

If headaches and migraines seem to affect the entire head, the most plausible culprit is too much heat being trapped inside the head. We educate our patients with energetic exercises, breathing techniques, and even diet changes, in order to treat the specific symptoms unique to each individual. Therefore, your diagnosis and treatment will depend on a number of variables. In diagnosing your individual issues, you may be asked a series of questions, including:

  • Is the headache behind your eyes and temples, or is it located more on the top of your head?
  • When do your headaches occur (i.e. night, morning, after eating)?
  • Do you find that a cold compress or a darkened room can alleviate some of the pain?
  • Is the pain dull and throbbing, or sharp and piercing?
  • Do you have more migraines right before or during your menstrual period?

Acupuncture stimulates specific points located on or near the surface of the skin to alter various biochemical and physiological conditions that cause aches and pains or illness. The length, number, and frequency of treatments will vary. Some headaches, migraines, and related symptoms are relieved after the first treatment, while more severe or chronic ailments often require multiple treatments.

Do you or someone you know suffer from headaches or migraines? Call today to find out how acupuncture and Oriental medicine can help you!