Although stress may be a part of every day life, the link between stress and negative outcomes is well established. Stress has negative impacts on our immune system, how quickly we age, mood, inflammation, and pain. Over 40 million Americans suffer from stress, anxiety, and sleep disorders. Fortunately, acupuncture and massage therapy are effective treatments for alleviating stress. When combined with therapy, these treatments are excellent complements that support what can be accomplished when working with a therapist. Patients often cite stress as something that accompanies many other common symptoms including back pain, headaches, migraines, insomnia, menopausal symptoms, PMS, and urinary issues. Certainly the link between infertility and stress has been demonstrated. Stress itself does not cause infertility but can lead to behaviors that make it difficult to get pregnant. These symptoms can be triggered by emotional distress which can set off a wide variety of unexpected feelings and behaviors- everything from depression and panic attacks, to disruptions in sleeping patterns and appetite. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine, as well as herbs, nutrition, and massage, can help to alleviate many of these symptoms, while treating the root cause of the problem to help rebalance the body naturally.
Many people rely on medications to alleviate or provide relief from their symptoms. The problem with this approach is, although they may help temporarily, most people cannot tolerate ongoing use of pharmaceuticals without negative side effects. Most people can build up a quick tolerance to these medications and they can be incredibly difficult to discontiue use without uncomfortable side effects. These medications can tax our vital internal organs as well. Natural alternatives to medications can be extremely helpful in helping you taper off. Research tells us that acupuncture reduces the production of our stress hormone cortisol and helps the body cope with the stress response. There is strong evidence for the use of acupuncture in the treatment of anxiety and acupuncture produces numerous mental and physical benefits even three months after a course of treatment. Massage therapy triggers the release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that has a calming effect. Additionally, we often hold tension in our necks and backs when experiencing distress. This can make our body feel tight and rigid, making sleep difficult. Anxiety and sleep problems can be caused by nutritional imbalances or deficiencies. It is important to maintain stable blood sugar and a balanced diet because the foods you eat can affect neurotransmitters and how your brain functions. Many times, anxious patients can experience hypoglycemia. This dip in blood sugar can cause someone to consume a high sugar meal to quickly relieve the low blood sugar. We experience a dopamine rush only then to experience a crash in the afternoon when dopamine is depleted.