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Heal Depression/Anxiety

Feeling any of the following?




-Feel stuck emotionally?




In Chinese medicine, these symptoms are referred to as Liver qi stagnation. One acupuncture point I use for a great deal of my patients is LIV-3 Taichong, and it is arguably one of the most important points of the Liver channel. It has an extensive range of actions, and may be used for both excess (pain felt in the body: back of scalp/Occiput where hairline meets back of your neck,upper trapezius muscles atop your shoulders, through the gluteal (a.k.a. Buttock) muscles and along the side of your legs through one's IT bands) and deficiency patterns of the Liver organ and its channel of qi (vital energy). When a person is very stressed out or feeling depression accompanied by anxiety, Chinese medicine refers to this as 'Liver qi constraint'.

"Once there is constraint, all diseases may arise"

(Master Zhu Dan-xi in the 14th century).

An estimated 1 in 5 adults suffer from a mental health disorder in a given year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Anxiety and depressive disorders are the most common of all mental illnesses. Both are severe, chronic and can significantly impair the individuals affected by them. Two randomized, controlled, clinical trials suggest that electroacupuncture may reduce any sign/symptom of depression as effectively as amitryptiline, a tricyclic antidepressant medication. Electroacupuncture involves the application of a small electrical current through acupuncture needles. Other studies suggest that acupuncture may be effective for people with mild depression and for those with depression related to a chronic medical illness.

Acupuncture or counseling for ongoing depression in primary care found that both acupuncture and counseling are effective for patients. When one experiences the “winter blues” from declining daylight or a condition commonly referred to as seasonal affect disorder (SAD), I use points to lift one's qi (vital force energy) upwards to their head, as in Du-20 (acupoint)- where all the Yang channels converge and Du-24 or 5 acupoints referred to as “Si Shen Cang” (on crown of head) for improving memory, clearing foggy brain, focusing one's mind as well as calming one's spirit. Walking for 15-30 mins./day (outdoors) or sitting and meditating or reading next to a Full Spectrum light bulb can also help in treating SAD.

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