Acupuncture has multiple benefits for Depression
Some recent research has shown Acupuncture to help patients suffering depression by reducing the side effects of drugs, and helping SSRIs to work. It is believed that Acupuncture has a positive affect on regulating the nervous system as well as reducing inflammation, which benefits depression sufferers.
Here is an extract from their research findings.
Acupuncture can accelerate the onset of the effects of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) in patients with depression and can reduce drug side-effects. The benefits of acupuncture in this group can also be measured objectively in terms of increased serum serotonin (5-HT) levels and regulation of the balance of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. In a Chinese study, 126 patients with depression were randomly divided into a medicine only group and an acupuncture-plus-medicine group, and treated for six weeks. All patients received acupuncture at the same points; Taichong LIV-3, Ququan LIV- 8, Qimen LIV-14, Danzhong REN-17, Shuigou DU-26, Neiguan P-6, Shenmen HE-7 and Xinshu BL-15, which were chosen for their TCM functions on soothing the Liver and nourishing the Heart according. Needles were retained for 30 minutes and patients received one acupuncture treatment every other day for six weeks. The acupuncture-medicine group showed significantly lower depression scores, along with significantly lower side-effect scores compared with the medicine group. Serum levels of 5-HT, and anti-inflammatory cytokines IL-4 and IL-10, were also found to be significantly higher in the acupuncture-medicine group, whereas pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels were significantly lower than in the medicine only group. A number of recent studies have confirmed that depressive disorder includes neuroimmune dysfunction, leading to the hypothesis that depression is related to activation of the inflammatory response. The authors of the current study postulate that, in addition to its ability to regulate neurotransmitter production, acupuncture’s anti-inflammatory actions may also be responsible for its beneficial effects on depression.
Effect of soothing-liver and nourishing-heart acupuncture on early selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor treatment onset for depressive disorder and related indicators of neuroimmunology: a randomized controlled clinical trial. J Tradit Chin Med. 2015 Oct;35(5):507-13.