Acupuncture for depression

Acupuncture for depression becomes more and more demanded service at Philadelphia Acupuncture Clinic. As our broadband speeds up and our phones get smarter, some matters regarding our health get overlooked — especially our mental health. Tablets and smartphones have made it more convenient to be connected, but a large number of people still feel disconnected. Fortunately, the Internet also has allowed people to explore the possibilities of trying complementary therapies such as acupuncture.

Acupuncture for DepressionAcupuncture is an ancient form of traditional Chinese medicine. It works on the principle of stimulating points in the body to correct imbalances in the flow of energy (Qi) through channels known as meridians. This belief is based on the interaction of the five elements (wood, fire, earth, metal, and water) and having profound effects on internal organs, which are either yin or yang.

Traditional Chinese medicine also recognizes the mind and body interacting as one, meaning that emotions have a physiological effect on the body. Five emotions are represented by the five elements:


  • Water (fear)
  • Wood (anger)
  • Fire (happiness)
  • Earth (worry)
  • Metal (grief)

Western medical practitioners traditionally have questioned the validity of traditional Chinese medicines such as acupuncture. More recently, acupuncture has been recognized as a legitimate treatment for some numerous of conditions and is growing in popularity.

What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is one of the most common mental illnesses worldwide. Many people suffer some form of anxiety occasionally, but others cannot manage this natural response to a stressful situation. When a person experiences a highly stressful or threatening scenario, the mind can be overloaded and fail to develop ways of coping.

Although the symptoms can be as manageable as an ominous feeling in the pit of the stomach, some suffer much worse. Anxiety can trigger the following responses:

  • Physical, such as an irregular heartbeat
  • Cognitive, which can cause negative thoughts
  • Behavioral, which may include uncharacteristic aggression or restlessness
  • Emotional, such as fear.

Depending on which of these symptoms prevail, different anxiety disorders may be diagnosed. This include:

  • generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
  • panic disorder
  • social anxiety disorder
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)

There is a variety of causes of anxiety; all have different treatments. An individual’s personality, behavior or style of thinking can cause them to be more susceptible to anxiety. Research has proven it also can be hereditary. A biochemical factor such as a chemical imbalance in the brain also has been proven to cause anxiety.

Traditional Chinese medicine relates anxiety to an imbalance of the energy of the heart and kidney. Fire represents the heart and joy according to the five elements philosophy. The diagnosis is that too much heat in the heart would imbalance the interaction with the kidney (represented as water and fear). This will result in the water organ failing to contain the fire organ rising up to the mind, leading to anxiety. Acupuncture on points around the heart, kidney, spleen and ear are used to treat anxiety.

What is Depression?

It is estimated that approximately one in five people will experience clinical depression at least once in their lifetime. Although it is natural to feel sad and down at times, especially after experiencing loss, these slight effects can be managed with gradual lifestyle adjustments. Clinical depression, however, refers to a long-lasting and intensely emotional, physical and cognitive state that greatly affects day-to-day life. Symptoms include:

  • Lose of positive associations and sense of achievement (lack of interest in normally pleasurable activities)
  • Negative thoughts (often worrying about the future)
  • Irritability, agitation, and exhaustion
  • Changes in sleeping patterns (too much or too little)
  • Hopelessness (feeling trapped or suicidal)

The causes of depression are known to be similar to the causes of anxiety. It is traditionally treated with antidepressant medication, psychological methods or a combination of both. Acupuncture for depression is being incorporated into Western medical science, mainly for treatment of soreness, seasickness, asthma, and different types of radiculopathy and neuropathy. Though the precise mechanism of accomplishment for acupuncture for depression is unidentified, it is related to intensification in the concentration of neuro-biologically dynamic constituents, for instance, endorphins and enkephalins. There is also information demonstrating that acupuncture for depression prompts the release of norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine.

Adverse Effect of Acupuncture for depression

Acupuncture for depression is much better tolerated by patients than tricyclic antidepressant pharmaceutical drugs. Side effects of acupuncture for depression if any is insignificant and short-lived and may manifest by a slight fatigue, sleepiness, temporary exacerbation of main symptoms, and mild irritation in the regions in which acupuncture needles are inserted.

Physical problems during acupuncture for depression, for instance: pneumothorax, contamination, heart complications, and spinal cord traumas had never been reported.

Available Data About Acupuncture for Depression.

Not many recently performed clinical studies, of Western acupuncture for depression and conditions associated with depression, are available. However, those few types of research that published in professional medical journals deliver unbiased info to prove the value of acupuncture for depression treatment. These studies discovered the change of neurotransmitters level in different body tissues and symptoms. Bio physiological studies at the same time discovered electroencephalographic variations in response to acupuncture for depression procedures.
The first clinical studies to match the effectiveness of acupuncture for depression with conservative managements published in the 1970s.

Beth Kurland Ph.D. published case reports of 3 women who suffered from severe emotional instability. All 3 patients suffered from severe depression. First they had been treated with varies anti-depressant drugs and psychotherapies. After a few months of this treatment with no positive response, these females initially got commonly used in those cases electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and then after 3 months of ineffective medical care were switched to electroacupuncture procedures (EAT). Electroacupuncture is a form of acupuncture for depression that assumes stimulation of needles with low-intensity electrical currents.

While ECT somewhat decreased the severity of the depressive symptoms, signs of profound memory loss along with misperception, and incomprehension raised. The EAT version of acupuncture for depression caused in substantial remission of the disease. Beth Kurland Ph.D. accentuated that EAT works more effective when used in combination with traditional treatment and less effective if performed alone.

Notwithstanding persistent pharmacological and psychological care, patients with depression show high relapse rates.

A group of scientists in Boston researched the long-term forecast for individuals with depression who received acupuncture for depression treatment.

Nineteen of 28 patients had attained a complete remission in the course of the acute stage of the study.

This research points out that efficacy rates and deterioration rates with acupuncture for depression are similar to those with the traditional pharmaceutical treatment of depression.

Another group of scientists on a similar study found no indications that pharmaceutical drugs are more effective than acupuncture for depression in aiding individuals to reach a remission or in avoiding relapse.

Acupuncture for Depression in pregnancy

A group of researchers at the University of Ireland deliberated the beneficial outcome of acupuncture for depression during pregnancy.

Sixty-five pregnant females received 12 sessions (25 to 40 min each) of acupuncture for depression during the period of 6 weeks.

The report for this study advocated the acupuncture for depression as an effective drug-free treatment during pregnancy.

Acupuncture for depression in Philadelphia

At the Philadelphia Acupuncture Clinic, the effectiveness rate of treatment for depression is above the national average because in this facility we successfully integrate acupuncture for depression with hypnotherapy taking control over the subconscious mind of our patients and repairing emotional disconnections.

Under the strict supervision of internationally recognized expert in holistic medicine Doctor Victor Tsan, our practitioners deliver the best quality of natural medical care.

To make an appointment for an initial FREE consultation and to find out if acupuncture for depression will benefit your condition contact our clinic or use our on-line scheduling system by clicking “book appointment” in the top menu of this site.