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Acupuncture: A Mental Health Aid

Robin Croley from the Chesterfield Acupuncture Clinic shares thoughts on his recent pandemic experiences.

Acupuncture addresses mental health and understands it both in terms of pathology, being stuck or having self-perpetuating negative thoughts and emotions, and potential, which is displaying appropriate responses to life events.

During lockdown, I observed an increase in people being worried and fearful.

Worry is fuelled by information, at any time we could find the internet fuelling feelings of worry, but when we consider the information we have had to process in the last six months, it’s no wonder people are struggling. The ‘what ifs’ can trigger a domino effect of infinite outcomes and for the worrier / overthinker, things can spiral out of control. When in control of these feelings, being mindful and considerate is a healthy manifestation of the situation.

Fear is more immediate than worry, and concerns what might happen in the very next moment. It is drama and the body responds with adrenaline; the fight or flight response. A healthy response puts people in a state of vigilance and readiness, just in case, however, fight or flight responses should only be short lived until danger has passed. The situation becomes out of control, exhausting and is unsustainable for someone to be in this state continually, on red alert for days, weeks or even months.

Many people have existed in this state of high alert now for many months. During the spring and summer when we should have emerged from our winter hibernation and recharged our batteries, we were subject to enforced withdrawal.

Without the earlier seasonal norms, the coming winter will be a challenging time for some people.

S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) is a recognised condition causing depression during the darker months and my concern this winter is for the unseen impact, and the effect of the previous seasons forced withdrawal on people. I predict a particularly tough season for many people’s mental health.

If you suspect you may be experiencing the feelings and emotions mentioned, please get in touch and find out how acupuncture may be able to help.

Words: Robin Croley


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