So many of us have been experiencing higher levels of anxiety as we move into August and finish out the Summer. In Chinese Medicine, the season of Summer can bring passion and joy and a strong desire to be more social. In our current environment with the coronavirus, we are most likely not getting to express this element fully, which could be contributing to increased anxiety — as well as the worry and unfamiliarity of what our futures hold.
If you are searching for a way to calm some of these feelings, consider pursuing some active daylight movement. Try to get out and experience nature. Meditation is also very beneficial. Seek out activities that will open your lungs and calm your heart.
If you feel like you are stuck in a place of heightened anxiety and stress that you cannot escape through deep breathing, exercise or talking, you may be suffering from trauma. Unfortunately, trauma can create a holding pattern in our bodies which can be hard to break. If this happens, it can force you to live in a state of elevated sympathetic nervous system — fight or flight.
Fight-or-flight is the physiological and psychological response that occurs in our bodies from the presence of something terrifying. Do we stay and fight or do we run to safety? During this response, our sympathetic nervous system stimulates the adrenal glands and triggers the release of adrenaline. Fight-or-flight plays a crucial role in how we deal with stress and danger, and can be lifesaving in certain circumstances — but when is it too much? Everyday stress should not be triggering this response and living in a prolonged state of elevated sympathetic nervous system can be detrimental to your physical and mental health.
If this sounds like you, we are here to help. Our treatments work to help you shift from a sympathetic or heightened state, into a parasympathetic or restful state. Acupuncture related to trauma and emotional issues is so effective because it allows us to move from a physical place first. These physical shifts can then guide emotional shifts. It is likely that we will be treating your liver and heart channels. In Chinese Medicine, the liver relates to stress and the heart relates to emotions in general and anxiety in particular. Anxiety related to the heart can tighten the chest. We want to open the chest, open the lungs, open the senses, and release all of this tension.
We will also evaluate your blood and circulation to determine if it is deficient and/or stagnant. The blood, in Chinese Medicine, is what holds our emotions. If it is deficient, it will be hard to experience emotions in the traditional way, and if it is stagnant you can experience pain and have a hard time letting things go. These issues often arise from emotional traumas, but they can also come from external sources, such as a viral condition that enters the blood and is not properly expelled by the body.
If you feel that you are experiencing anxiety or trauma or finding yourself stuck in a pattern of fight-or-flight, acupuncture and bodywork can provide major support for healing. To schedule an appointment, call (843) 937-6890 or click here.