If you understand how acupuncture works, you can determine whether it might benefit your anxiety issues. Traditional Chinese medicine is built on the belief that a vital life force (qi or chi) exists in all living creatures. The force travels around the body through a meridian system. The meridians are associated with organs and body systems. When the flow of energy is blocked or off kilter, your health---both physical and emotional---can be affected. Restoring proper flow and balance to the body through the placement of acupuncture needles on specific therapeutic points can bring symptom relief and peace of mind.
Acupuncture and Anxiety
Knowing how acupuncture affects anxiety symptoms is important. In some patients, acupuncture can ease worry and nervous disorders quickly and for long periods of time. You may be less agitated, calmer, think more clearly, have better social interactions and be less aggressive, according to the reference book "Alternative Medicine." If this sounds beneficial, research some acupuncture practitioners in your area.
In Conjunction with Other Treatments
Consider trying acupuncture in conjunction with other anxiety and stress-reducing methods. Often when acupuncture is combined with a healthy lifestyle---including exercise and proper nutrition---anxiety can be minimized. Also, acupuncture may quiet your mind and body enough to try "exposure therapy." This type of treatment encourages you to face your fears gradually in a safe and controlled manner. The combination of therapies is often more effective than relying on just one.
An Acupuncture Plan
Acupuncture treatments usually last from 10 to 45 minutes. Meet with an acupuncture practitioner and come up with a plan that treats your specific anxiety symptoms. Social anxiety may be treated differently than panic disorder. This plan will include how often to get treatments and for how long. Also, you can elect to have acupuncture point stimulation without needles. Herbs, cupping (which creates suction over a point or muscle) and acupressure are alternatives.
Anxiety sufferers often believe that medication is their only hope for relief from the mentally and physically exhausting symptoms they experience. However, there are alternative treatments available, including acupuncture, in which a trained practitioner inserts extremely thin needles into different points on the body, stimulating areas believed to correspond to the health condition in question. The practice originated in China approximately 5,000 years ago, and is used to treat dozens of health conditions and issues, including anxiety.