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Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs for Depression, Anxiety and Burnout

More than ever, people are struggling with feelings of sadness, anxiety and loneliness. Feelings of emptiness or anxiety, difficulty concentrating or even thoughts of suicide are possible symptoms of depression. Acupuncture has been shown to be effective in helping to manage and overcome both low-grade depression and major depression.

We are all facing a lot of stress right now and we know that stress causes various health problems. Many people have become accustomed to yearly bouts of depression due to seasonal affective disorder (SAD). 

Anxiety and depression are most often a combination of deficient and excessive symptoms. As opposed to prescribing medication to "relieve" symptoms, an acupuncturist will perform a comprehensive health assessment and diagnosis.

Sad on Couch
Wellness Coach

Understanding depression and anxiety in TCM

The theory of five elements also includes 5 energies that are not physical in nature and are connected or   belong to our five systems. 


  • Fire: Heart System and Shen (Basic Control Energy)

  • Metal: Lung System and Po (stability)

  • Water: Kidney System and Zhi (Determination)

  • Earth: The Spleen System and Yin (Intellectual Thinking)

  • Wood: liver system and Hun (soul)

A case of clinical depression is usually a complex and multisystemic problem: 

  1. With a broken heart and Shen, we can't control our tantrums.  

  2. We feel general fatigue due to the affected system of lungs and Poja.  

  3. We think more slowly, as the spleen and Yin system are affected;  

  4. We are quick-tempered, as the liver and Hun were attacked;  

  5. Negative thoughts due to affected kidneys and Zhi. 

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Acupuncture has been shown to:

  • Reducing anxiety and panic by regulating cortisol and reducing the fight or flight response.

  • relief of physical signs of stress, including feelings of panic, a lump in the throat or stomach, gastrointestinal problems, increased heart rate

  • reduces insomnia and promotes better rest

  • reduces intense mood swings 

  • increases the release of endorphins, which help regulate physical and emotional responses to stress, such as pain, heart rate, blood pressure, and gastrointestinal function.

  • In some studies, it reduced the level of depression as well as antidepressants, especially in patients after medical events such as stroke.

  • reducing the frequency of postpartum depression

How can we help ourselves?

Many of my patients with depression or anxiety have a common symptom: poor appetite or indigestion. Therefore, make sure that you eat regularly and that you have warm meals, because only these provide the body with Qi energy. Avoid sweets to avoid overloading the energy channels. You can also get nutritional recommendations from us.

If it is an overuse type of illness, you should exercise and move moderately and regularly. In the case of a weakness-type illness, however, you should rest more and avoid stressful situations. You can help yourself with yoga or mindfulness training. Please consult a TCM specialist to determine the type of disease and to determine which system has been attacked and affected.

Disease conditions vary from person to person. Not everyone is able to heal themselves. Untreated depression or anxiety can do a lot of damage to a person.


 Get help before it's too late. 

Image by Jake Nackos
Image by Henry & Co.

A holistic approach to long-term health

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