An Effective Alternative for Stress Reduction
As much as we wish we could avoid it, stress will always be a part of our lives. Though we generally perceive it as a negative, it does serve a valuable purpose in that it keeps us motivated and on track with our personal and professional responsibilities. Like all good things, however, it can become detrimental to us in excess. When stress becomes chronic, we risk becoming physically and emotionally unhealthy.
Nearly 20 million Americans suffer from depressive and anxiety disorders. Many struggle to quell their discomforts in ways that do not truly address the root and often make matters worse. In recent years, more and more people are searching for an alternative to prescription medication in managing these conditions.
Recent studies illustrate how acupuncture can be an effective method in relieving the symptoms associated with stress by re-establishing balance in a patient’s physical and emotional well-being. One study by Georgetown University, suggests that acupuncture works by targeting the pathways that stress signals travel along. These are the same pathways targeted by anti-anxiety and antidepressant medications.
The release of endorphins (hormones that act as the body’s natural painkillers) has been shown to play a crucial role in how acupuncture reduces stress and balances the body. Insertion of fine needles at specific locations throughout the body stimulates endorphin release. Increased endorphins help restore internal balance and are responsible for the overall sense of well-being that patients often report following acupuncture treatments.
Combining treatments with regular exercise and a well-balanced diet increases their efficacy and shortens the amount of time necessary to begin feeling the full benefits. And, of course, the quicker this occurs, the quicker you can return to feeling like your old self again.
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