In Traditional Chinese Medicine there is no separation between the mind, the body and the emotions. By treating the body, we also treat the mind.
The mind and the emotions are governed by the Heart. The Heart is where the Shen (consciousness, self-governance) resides. When dealing with any form of mental unease, be it mild anxiety, panic attacks or post-traumatic stress, we seek to calm the Shen and harmonise the Heart.
The Heart controls other conditions that can contribute to anxiety and mental unease like the ability to sleep well, issues of emotional volatility, powers of concentration, regular heart rhythms and good circulation. Acupuncture for anxiety seeks to strengthen the functioning of all conditions under the control of the Heart, while addressing the main issue.
In classical theory, the Heart is intricately linked to the other main organs in the body in a regulatory system. As a result, an imbalance in the Heart will ultimately create imbalances in other parts of the body. Anxiety, then, can also be a contributing factor to physical problems in other areas – for example nausea, digestive disorders, constipation, headaches, fatigue, sweating and muscle tension. Acupuncture also addresses these.
While acupuncture can help calm, stabilize and maintain the Heart and Shen, we also recommend working with appropriate psychotherapeutic/counselling therapies where necessary. We work with people on medication, tapering levels of medication or seeking to avoid it.
Acupuncture is a powerful tool to help calm the Shen and alleviate anxiety, but it cannot compensate for an excessive lifestyle or make dangerous decisions safe. Acupuncture treatment is often accompanied by dietary and lifestyle recommendations.