25. July 2017 · Comments Off · Categories: Acupuncture, Anxiety, Auricular Acupuncture
27. June 2017 · Comments Off · Categories: Anxiety, Insomnia, Tai Chi Chuan

Tai chi may be an effective non-pharmaceutical means of improving anxiety and poor sleep quality in young adults, according to a pilot study from America. Seventy-five adults aged 18-40 were randomised to one of three interventions: 10 weeks of tai chi classes (twice per week), 10 weeks of tai chi with a DVD or a control group who received a handout on anxiety management. Eighty-five per cent of participants were retained during the intervention and 70 per cent completed the two month follow-up assessments. To increase statistical power, the two tai chi groups were combined in the analyses of anxiety and sleep quality measures. No significant changes in anxiety were found in the control group, whereas levels of anxiety decreased significantly over time in the two tai chi groups. Sleep quality scores improved across time for all three groups, but tai chi participants who adhered to their practice reported the greatest improvement.
Effects of tai chi chuan on anxiety and sleep quality in young adults: lessons from a randomized controlled feasibility study. Nat Sci Sleep. 2016 Nov 14;8:305-314.

Auricular acupuncture (AA) is as effective as progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) in treating anxiety and depression, according to German research. One hundred and sixty two patients with a primary diagnosis of anxiety disorder or major depressive disorder were allowed to choose between treatment with AA (National Acupuncture Detoxification Association protocol) or treatment with PMR, a standardised and accepted relaxation method. Each group had treatments twice a week for four weeks. The results showed that treatment with AA significantly decreased tension, anxiety and anger/aggression throughout the four weeks, but did not elevate mood. No statistically significant differences were found between the two treatments at any time point.
Auricular Acupuncture Versus Progressive Muscle Relaxation in Patients with Anxiety Disorders or Major Depressive Disorder: A Prospective Parallel Group Clinical Trial. J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2016 Aug;9(4):191-9.

26. January 2017 · Comments Off · Categories: Acupuncture, Anxiety, Ear Acupuncture

Auricular acupuncture (AA) can decrease pre-competition anxiety in adolescent athletes, Iranian authors report. Forty-five adolescent football players received either AA, sham AA or no treatment, four hours before a competition event. AA was carried out with needle stimulation at two ear points – Relaxation and Shenmen. Sham acupuncture used placebo needles at the same points. Participants completed an anxiety questionnaire and had their heart rate and skin conductance measured before and after the intervention. The results showed that acupuncture had a significant effect on cognitive anxiety and somatic anxiety, but not on self-confidence. In addition, acupuncture significantly decreased skin conductance in the acupuncture group compared to the sham and no treatment groups.
Acupuncture Anxiolytic Effects on Physiological and Psychological Assessments for a Clinical Trial. Scientifica (Cairo). 2016;2016:4016952.

10. May 2016 · Comments Off · Categories: Acupuncture, Anxiety, Auricular Acupuncture

Auricular acupuncture (AA) can help reduce pre-exam anxiety in medical students, according to a German pilot study. Ten students received bilateral AA with indwelling needles at Lung, Shenmen, Kidney, Sympathetic and Adrenal points on the day before an anatomy exam. The needles were removed after the exam. Exam anxiety measured using both the State-Trait-Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and a 100 mm visual analogue scale (VAS-100) decreased by almost 20% after AA.
Auricular acupuncture for pre-exam anxiety in medical students: a prospective observational pilot investigation. Acupunct Med. 2015 Oct 5. pii: acupmed-2015-010887.

01. October 2015 · Comments Off · Categories: Acupuncture, Anxiety

A UK pilot study suggests that acupuncture may be a promising intervention for patients with chronic anxiety symptoms that resistant to other forms of treatment. Forty participants from a psychiatry waiting list were randomised into one of two groups. One group received 10 weeks of acupuncture at Neiguan PC-6, Shenmen HT-7 and Taichong LIV-3, while the other group acted as a waiting list control group. The waiting list group then received acupuncture. Both groups were followed up for 10 weeks after treatment. State anxiety scores in the acupuncture group were found to decrease from 57.7 to 38.8, while scores in the waiting list control group decreased from 61.5 to 60.6. This difference was highly statistically significant. Similar changes were seen for trait anxiety scores. The control group showed similar statistically significant improvements when they received acupuncture. These improvements were maintained after 10 weeks of follow-up in each group. (Randomised controlled trial on the use of acupuncture in adults with chronic, non-responding anxiety symptoms. Acupunct Med. 2015 Apr;33(2):98-102).

23. April 2015 · Comments Off · Categories: Acupuncture, Anxiety

Authors of a Korean meta-analysis have concluded that acupuncture therapy aimed at reducing preoperative anxiety has a statistically significant effect relative to placebo. Fourteen papers (involving 1,034 subjects) were included in the analysis. Six publications, using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory-State (STAI-S), reported that acupuncture interventions led to a greater reductions in preoperative anxiety relative to sham acupuncture. A further eight publications that employed visual analogue scales (VAS) indicated significant differences in preoperative anxiety amelioration between acupuncture and sham acupuncture. (Efficacy of acupuncture in reducing preoperative anxiety: a meta-analysis. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:850367).

Norwegian researchers have found that mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) is an effective treatment for anxiety disorders. Seventy-six patients were randomised to an eight-week MBSR intervention or a wait-list control. Those who completed treatment (eight did not) improved significantly on all outcome measures compared to controls. MBSR had medium to large effect sizes on anxiety and a large effect size for symptoms of depression, and the effect was maintained at six months follow-up. (Patients with anxiety disorders: evaluation in a randomized controlled trial. Behav Res Ther. 2011 Apr;49(4):281-8).

Participation in yoga classes can lead to significant reduction in anxiety in women who suffer from anxiety disorders. Sixty-five women suffering from depression and anxiety were randomly assigned to an experimental or control waiting list group. The experimental group participated in twice weekly 90 minute yoga classes for two months. The average prevalence of depression in the experimental group pre- and post-yoga did not decrease significantly, but women who participated in yoga classes showed a significant decrease in state and trait anxiety compared to the control group. (Effects of yoga on depression and anxiety of women. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2009 May;15(2):102-4).

A systematic review of the evidence for the efficacy of acupuncture in the treatment of anxiety disorders has shown positive findings. Authors based at London’s University of Westminster performed searches of the major biomedical databases as well as specialist CAM databases. Twelve controlled trials were located, of which ten were randomised controlled trials (RCTs). All trials reported positive findings, but the reports were found to lack many basic methodological details. Positive findings were reported for acupuncture in the treatment of generalised anxiety disorder or anxiety neurosis, however the poor quality of the evidence prevented firm conclusions from being drawn. Limited evidence was also found in favour of auricular acupuncture for perioperative anxiety. Overall, the authors concluded that the findings were ‘promising’ and warranted further well-designed, adequately powered studies. (Acupuncture for anxiety and anxiety disorders – a systematic literature review. Acupunct Med. 2007 Jun;25(1-2):1-10)