Acupuncture & Emotional Healing: The Process of Regeneration
This study also established a correlation between what you think and how you feel, consistent with TCM philosophy. It has been proven effective in treating chronic back pain, headaches, and other issues. However, what people often don’t know about acupuncture is how it can help with emotional health. Acupuncture is a process of regeneration that restores our natural balance by providing relief from stress, anxiety, depression, and trauma.
The first thing you should do before starting learning about this ancient healing modality is to become informed on all aspects of it so that your mind will be open enough for change when you are ready for it!
In traditional Chinese medicine, the emotions and health of your body are connected. This means that they can affect each other, and it goes both ways.
Do you have trouble sleeping? Do you feel angry or irritable? TCM theory says that the liver can affect menstrual pain, headache, redness of the face and eyes, dizziness, and dry mouth. The imbalance in your liver can cause stormy moods.
In traditional Chinese medicine, diagnosis is very individual. Doctors will look at what’s wrong and then find the right treatment. The person’s symptoms also help doctors decide which treatment will work best.
What is Traditional Chinese Medicine?
Chinese medicine has been practiced for a long time. Now in the United States, people use it in addition to other healthcare treatments. In 2002, there were 8 million people who used acupuncture, and by 2007, 14 million did.
TCM is a way to keep your body and mind in good shape. It is based on the idea that mental and physical health go together. That means you need to balance your life force with the forces of yin and yang, both passive and active.
Doctors believe that emotional imbalances can be both physical symptoms and causes for other health conditions in traditional Chinese medicine. Mental health problems are frequently associated with specific physical illnesses affecting critical organs. Traditional Chinese medicine thinks that there are five basic emotions and that each is related to a body part.
- Anger can make your liver hurt.
- Fear affects the kidneys.
- Joy is associated with the heart
- Sadness and grief affects the lung
- Worry affects the spleen
For example, people with a liver problem will have a headache. You might have dizziness and redness on your face. People who don’t have a liver problem might get angry quickly or have pain during their period.
How Does TCM Affect the Body
The liver is part of a person’s body. The TCM system includes Western medical-physiological functions, but they are also a part of the integrated, holistic body system. So this may mean that a person’s whole mind and body may be evaluated to improve their health concerns.
The liver is important because it makes energy and blood flow smoothly. It also helps to regulate bile secretion and stores blood. The liver is connected with the tendons, nails, and eyes.
Chinese Medicine practitioners say that when people have an eye disorder, it might be because their liver isn’t working correctly. Or, if someone has excess menstrual flow, it could be because their liver can’t store blood well.
The emotional side of the liver is connected to anger. When this is out of balance, it might emerge in extremes such as excessive rage or aggravation or a complete lack of feeling such as despair. These mental health problems can both be symptoms and causes of liver dysfunction.
People who practice TCM use a variety of different treatments for ailments. These include acupuncture, herbal medicines, moxibustion (heat therapy), cupping (a suction procedure that cultivates blood flow), tui na massage (therapeutic massage and bodywork), and nutrition.
TCM believes that other things make people feel bad. These are about what you eat, your environment, how you live, and if you come from a family with problems.
It is important to understand the connections between organs and emotions in traditional Chinese medicine. This can help you with physical and mental health issues. Below I am going to tell you what each of these connections is.
The spleen is important for the body’s immune system. It filters out old blood cells, bacteria, and impurities. The spleen in TCM is connected to these emotions and health problems:
- Emotions: Excessive mental work is when you are too focused on one thing or do not let go of something.
- Spleen function: The tongue helps form blood and energy. It also keeps the blood in your veins. The tongue is connected to your muscles, mouth, and lips. The tongue also helps you think, study, and remember things.
- Symptoms of spleen imbalance: If you feel tired and have a loss of appetite, you have mucus discharge, and your digestion is poor, then you might be sick. Your stomach might be bloated, and you might have loose stools. You might also get diarrhea. If this happens then, your muscles will become weak too. You may also bruise easily or bleed more than normal from the uterus (a woman’s organ containing eggs released during ovulation).
- Spleen conditions: The spleen is weak. This means that it cannot do its job to make energy. When this occurs, the body will be depleted of energy.
The lungs are in the body and bring oxygen in. They remove polluted air, specifically carbon dioxide. This organ is considered to be associated with sadness in TCM.
- Emotions: Grief, sadness, and detachment are emotions you can feel inclined with your lungs.
- Lung function: Your respiration brings you energy from the air and helps to put it in your body. They work with your kidneys to help you regulate water metabolism. They are important for your immune system and help keep you safe from viruses and bacteria. They also work with sweat glands, helping them make moisture for the skin.
- Symptoms of lung imbalance: If you have trouble breathing, have a cough, are tired, have allergies or asthma, or have dry skin, then you might be sad. It makes sense to feel depressed if you are not feeling well.
- Lung conditions: People with lung qi deficiency have trouble breathing. This means that their lungs are not working well. People with lung qin deficiency or lung yin deficiency do not have enough liquid in the lungs, so they might get sick more often.
The liver is an important organ. It helps you digest and process food. The liver is related to anger, depression, and the following physical symptoms in Traditional Chinese Medicine:
- Emotions: When you are angry, you may feel frustrated and not control your feelings. This can lead to resentment and bitterness. People may fly off the handle when they are angry. Such feelings are related to your liver.
- Liver function: The liver plays a critical role in distributing energy and blood throughout the body. The liver regulates bile secretion and stores blood. It is connected with tendons, nails, and eyes too.
- Symptoms of liver imbalance: A woman may have breast distension, menstrual pain, headache, or other eye conditions. The person might also be irritable and angry.
- Liver conditions: Liver fire and liver qi stagnation
The heart is an organ that pumps blood throughout the body. This organ is associated with joy in TCM. Yet, we experience distinct sensations when too much or too little joy. Below are the mental and physical ailments that can happen if there is an imbalance of joy:
- Emotions: When people are unhappy, they often have these feelings: lack of enthusiasm and vitality, mental restlessness, depression, insomnia, and despair.
- Heart function: Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to your body. Blood is responsible for a regular heartbeat, affecting how you feel. Blood also helps keep your skin look good, and it’s connected with the tongue, the way you look, and your arteries.
- Symptoms of heart imbalance: Insomnia, heart palpitations, and irregular heartbeat can cause you to have nightmares. This leads to bad long-term memory and psychological disorders.
- Heart conditions: The heart is made of two parts. One part is called “yin,” and the other is called “fire.”
The kidneys remove fluids and waste. When there is not enough qi in the body, the kidneys make urine too much. This can happen when someone is scared or has anxiety. The symptoms are fear or anxiety, and they may also have other symptoms from having too much fluid in their body.
- Emotions: People with weak willpower are often fearful, insecure, aloof, and isolated.
- Kidney function: Key organs are important to life. They are involved with reproduction, growth, development, and maturation. One of the key organs is the lungs which help in water metabolism and respiration. The other key organ is the bones which help support the body.
- Symptoms of kidney imbalance: A person may have these symptoms if they are very sick. They feel weak, are often urinating, cannot control their bladder or bowel, feel sweaty at night, their mouth feels dry, and sometimes short-term memory is not good.
- Kidney conditions: Kidneys can be weak if they have too much or too little yin or yang.
Other Conditions Related to TCM
This is about emotional and organ imbalances. This can be diagnosed by traditional Chinese medicine practitioners. Below are the conditions related to this topic.
- Blood stagnation is when the blood does not move around in your body properly. You may feel pain or discomfort.
- If you have a blood deficiency, you will get headaches, feel dizzy, and be tired.
- Stomach heat means that you have a problem with your digestion.
How Well is TCM?
There has been a lot of research on traditional Chinese medicine, and some people like it. But many people think it is not as good as Western medicine for treating conditions. There hasn’t been enough research to know which kind of medicine is better for what conditions.
To date, there hasn’t been much study done into the efficacy and safety of TCM treatments for specific health issues.
Some people who take TCM treatments feel better because of the placebo effect. This study also established a correlation between what you think and how you feel, consistent with TCM philosophy.
Because the symptoms of a variety of alternative medicine TCM syndromes may be linked to a number of serious health problems, it’s critical to see your normal medical doctor for evaluation as well. Self-treating a health problem and/or choosing not to go to regular care might have severe consequences.
Having said that, TCM can be a beneficial component of integrative health. This is because many people believe it benefits their mental and physical health.
If you want to learn more about the various healing properties of acupoints, you can check out this link.
Frequently Asked Questions About Acupuncture Emotional Healing
Acupuncture is a good way to help with emotional problems. The body can get stuck in fight, flight, or bad freeze mode. Acupuncture helps the body go back into the rest and digest mode, which is better for you.
Acupuncture can cause you to feel more emotion. Acupuncture also might make your symptom easier to feel after a treatment session.
Acupuncture helps your body to heal. It also helps you feel good and have peace of mind and spirit.
I am not sure how often people should get acupuncture treatments. In some studies, people got acupuncture treatments once a week to six days a week. I cannot tell which is better.
Acupuncture can improve symptoms in someone who has PTSD, such as anxiety and panic. It is even better than paroxetine.
It is normal to feel tired after acupuncture. This means you should take a break and rest. It is also normal for your body parts where the needles go in to feel sore afterward. Within 24 hours, the discomfort should subside.
Acupuncture needles are thinner than medical needles. You will feel muscle sensations, like a dull ache or tingling. This means that the treatment is working.
Some people feel relaxed after acupuncture, but not everyone. If you do not see any changes in your symptoms after a few weeks of treatment, acupuncture may not be right for you.
Quieting yourself when you’re in distress can help you feel better. It can be a good way to release endorphins, which are your body’s natural pain killers.
Detoxification often happens when people change their diet. It can be hard for your body to get used to it. You might also have headaches, feel sick, or not sleep well while detoxing.