Today, it is estimated that 1 in 10 Americans are taking a form of antidepressant. As new forms of anti-depressants are becoming increasingly popular and accessible, the downside to these pharmaceutical drugs are adverse reactions, side effects and resistance. Many people are now seeking alternative safer approaches to combat depression for long-term success. At TCM Health Center, we are often asked how patients in China deal with depression. Pharmaceutical drugs are not popular and minimally used by hospitals in China. The reason being not that individuals in China experience less depression, as it is hard to avoid external factors that can culminate in an mental disorder no matter where we live in, but that people in China deal with depression differently: they seek acupuncture treatment and take herbal formulas.

In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), mental or emotional problems such depression are attributed to an imbalance or blockage in one or more of the internal organics and the energy pathways (meridians) that pertain to them. Some common patterns that can manifest into depression are Liver Chi Stagnation, Spleen Chi Deficiency, Kidney Essence Deficiency, or Lung and Heart meridian disorder. Generally, people begin by experience an imbalance in one organ or meridian.

Clinical studies show that patients who receive acupuncture treatments show significant reduction in depression symptoms. In one study, after a selected treatment period, more than half of the patients no longer met the criteria for clinical depression. Research shows that acupuncture can alter the levels of many neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, that profoundly effects mental states. 

If you have any further questions about acupuncture treatment for depression, please feel free to give any one of our locations a call to schedule an initial consultation. We look forward to hearing from you!

I’ve had depression for years. I had taken three different types of anti-depression medications. But each time I would develop a tolerance towards its effectiveness and I would proceed to switch medications. After the first few treatments I felt like something had been switched on in my mind and I felt better. I continued with regular treatment for two months before I felt more stabilized. I still return back once in awhile- especially when winter hits here in Minnesota and the weather gets a bit gloomier. But acupuncture has helped me changed my own outlook on life in more ways than one.
— Annabeth B.