Stress effects us mentally and physically. Some stress is beneficial. For example, if a wild animal is chasing you, stress makes you more alert, dilates your pupils, gets your heart racing, sends blood to your extremities, and heightens your reflexes. These physiological changes help you quickly escape to save your life.
On the other hand, chronic stress from daily life, work, and responsibilities has a negative effect on our health. It can affect our digestion, immune system, reproductive system, and cardiovascular system. Studies have shown that constant stress experienced over a prolonged period of time can contribute to long-term problems for heart and blood vessels due to ongoing increase in heart rate, elevated levels of stress hormones, and elevated blood pressure. Stress speeds up our aging process.
Mental and emotional symptoms of chronic stress may include:
Physical symptoms of chronic stress may include:
Acupuncture is proven to activate our Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS) which governs “rest and digest”. When we are under stress, our Sympathetic Nervous Systems (SNS) or “flight or fight” response is active. Acupuncture’s ability to reset the body from a SNS to PNS states, is one of the first steps of managing stress.
Chinese medicine recognizes stress as a stagnation of energy. When the natural flow of energy within the body is stagnated, the function of all our organs and systems can suffer. There are specific acupuncture points and herbal formulas that are used to release this stagnant or stuck energy. We complement these “de-stressing” points with additional points to address secondary symptoms such as poor digestion, focus, or headaches.
We suggest weekly sessions to provide treatment and discuss strategies that can help you cope with anything that comes up in life.
Ultimately, managing stress is one of our most powerful anti-aging and disease prevention tools.