With sufficient stress even an extraordinarily healthy person may develop psychological problems such as anxiety and panic attacks. Everyone has their breaking point, no matter how healthy their nervous system may be to begin with. Luckily acupuncture for anxiety works extremely well.
No matter how bad your situation or symptoms appear to be, there is help. Here at CARE Wellness Center, we have put together an effective and successful anxiety treatment program to combat anxiety and panic attacks to get you feeling like yourself again.
Robert Herbst AP, DOM has a master’s degree in clinical psychology and has worked in the field of psychology prior to beginning his training in Chinese medicine. He utilizes herbal medicine and Acupuncture to effectively treat many psychological conditions including anxiety, depression and addictions.
Clinical research has proven that acupuncture treatment combined with herbal medicine is a more effective long-term treatment for anxiety than traditional pharmaceutical drugs and western therapies.
Acupuncture for anxiety – Treatment from a holistic perspective
Here we will discuss the symptoms of anxiety, its causes according to eastern medicine, and how we treat this debilitating condition with Acupuncture and herbal formulas.
Anxiety has a wide variety of definitions, but the one most commonly agreed upon describes it as “a feeling of threat, especially of a fearsome threat, without the person’s being able to say what he thinks threatens”.
It consists of a somatic, physiological side (disturbed breathing, increased heart activities, vasomotor changes, muscolo-skeletal disturbances such as trembling or paralysis, increased sweating) and of a psychological side (perception of specific unpleasurable feelings and sensations, apprehension).
Anxiety is differentiated from fear; the former is a reaction to an unreal or imagined danger. Fear, the Chinese say, is an emotion that descends to the Kidneys, and anxiety is an emotion that ascends to the Heart.
Anxiety is a multi-faceted phenomenon, which may also be classified as acute or chronic. Combinations of acute and chronic anxiety may be observed in, and experienced by, the same person.
Anxiety is not only a signal that all is not well, but a declaration that the organism is still capable of responding. It is, after all, a sign of life and an indication that the person still has the strength to struggle with his malady.
There are 5 main causes of anxiety according to eastern medicine:
Your acupuncturist will give you a thorough evaluation to determine the true root cause of your anxiety. Once that is determined, a specific course of action (treatment plan) will be implemented to get you feeling more like yourself again. We have successfully treated many over the years and we are confident that we can help you too.
Read on to get an overview of some of the typical patterns that we see that contribute to anxiety and panic attacks. Your specific pattern will be discussed with you in detail so you understand what is causing your anxiety and how we can treat it.
Weak constitution, stress and sudden fright / trauma – The first pattern we see often is a combination of a weak constitution and a sudden fright that leads to generalized anxiety and ultimately panic attacks. The symptoms include palpitations, restlessness, dream-disturbed sleep, and anorexia. It is usually the energy of the Heart that is affected here. We are not talking about the actual Heart organ, but the energy of the Heart.
You may see a pulse quality (at the wrist) that is thready and weak, and the object of the anxiety treatment and therapy is to calm the Heart energy and thereby soothe the mind, which in eastern medicine is said to be controlled by the Heart. This is done by promoting the circulation of Heart qi (energy), using acupuncture points such as UB-15 (xin shu), CV-14 (ju que), H-7 (shen men), P-6 (nei guan) and P-7 (da ling). Acupuncture needles are super thin, sterile and painless. We would also prescribe an appropriate herbal formula to lessen your symptoms of anxiety.
Blood deficiency – The second cause is deficiency of the blood of the Heart energy due to blood loss and chronic disease. The predominant symptoms are impairment of memory and concentration, palpitation, pallor, dizziness, vertigo, and blurred vision. The principal effect is, once again, on the Heart energy, but this time it involves blood more than qi.
The objects of treatment are three-fold. The first is to build the blood by strengthening the Spleen, which governs digestion – the principal source of nourishment for making blood. The second is to move the blood, and the third is to reinforce the Heart. Points such as UB-20 (pi shu), UB-21 (wei shu), ST-26 (zu san li), UB-17 (ge shu), points on the Heart channel and Heart Shu points are used. We would also prescribe an appropriate herbal formula for this pattern.
Excess Fire – The third cause of anxiety according to the principles of eastern medicine is excess fire due to Yin (Water) Deficiency. The symptoms of anxiety are palpitations, irritability, insomnia, dizziness, and tinnitus. This is a water deficient condition of the Kidney energy and Heart energy, which often occurs simultaneously with a condition of blood deficiency. The object is to tonify the Kidneys, remove heat from the Heart, and soothe the mind with such points as UB-14 (jue yin shu), UB-23 (shen shu), and KD-13 (tai xi), plus points along the Heart channel. We would also prescribe an appropriate herbal formula for this pattern.
Retention of Fluids – The fourth cause is internal retention of harmful fluid due to a deficiency of the Spleen and Kidney energies. The symptoms are palpitation, fullness in the chest and epigastrium, lassitude, and cough with sputum. There is thirst but with no desire to drink. The pulse is strong and slippery, and the tongue is covered with a sticky white coating.
The object of the treatment is to tonify the Spleen and Kidney Yang using such points as UB-20 (pi shu), ST-36 (zu san li), CV-6 (qi hai), CV-17 (shan zhong) – to warm the qi of the yang, and UB-22 (san jiao shu) – to regulate the water of the Triple Burner. This also warms the yang and removes water retention. We would also prescribe an appropriate herbal formula for this pattern.
Phlegm Fire – The fifth cause is internal phlegm-fire. Phlegm comes from a long accumulation of dampness and is the approximate equivalent of what we call mucus. Phlegm comes from Spleen deficiency and fire from excessive heat due to severe stagnation in the Liver – Gallbladder energy configuration. The heat dries out the water from the dampness, leaving the heavier residue, which we call phlegm.
The cause of heat in the Liver-Gallbladder is due either to suppressed emotions or to chemicals including alcohol, caffeine, and recreational drugs. Prolonged illness may be another contributing factor. The symptoms are palpitations, irritability, quick temper, obsessions, and excessive dreaming.
The treatment includes points to remove phlegm such as ST-40 (feng long), CV-22 (tian tu), points to remove heat such as GB-34 (yang ling quan) and LV-2 (xing xian); points to remove both from the Lungs, such as UB-13 (fei shu) and LU-5 (chi ze); points to remove fire and or phlegm from the Heart such as UB-14. We would also prescribe an appropriate Chinese herbal formula for this pattern.
If you’re suffering with Anxiety – we can help!
Keep in mind that whatever may be the cause of your anxiety, Acupuncture can really help reduce your symptoms and help you feel well again. Please call 954-586-8088 to schedule an evaluation with Dr. Robert Herbst today. We have helped so many of our patients suffering with anxiety, and we are confident that we can help you too. If you live in Margate, Coral Springs, Coconut Creek, Parkland or Deerfield Beach we are just minutes away in Peppertree Plaza on 441 and Sample Road.
Learn more about Acupuncture and herbal medicine by visiting TheAcupuncturists.org