Updated: Sep 28, 2019
Research has found that 10-20% of women experience postpartum depression after giving birth; that's 1 in 7 women, or 600,000 individual diagnoses in the United States every year!
Symptoms of postpartum depression appear after childbirth and include (but are not limited to):
low self esteem
lack of appetite
not bonding with the baby
Western medicine often prescribes fluoxetine hydrochloride (Prozac®) to manage symptoms of postpartum depression. Unfortunately, fluoxetine usage can cause nausea, dizziness, and loss of appetite in addition to the other problems of postpartum depression.
With acupuncture, the body works to cure the root causes of postpartum depression naturally without the adverse effects of medication.
Acupuncture for Postpartum Depression
Acupuncture works to regulate the central nervous system to trigger the relaxation response in the body. Postpartum depression alters nerve response as well as the expression of genes in the brain, which perpetuates the feelings of anxiety and depression. With acupuncture, blood circulation is increased to the brain to stimulate nerve regeneration and restore regular neural activity to break the cycle.
Acupuncture regulates the release of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine to relieve feelings such as irritability, anxiety, and melancholy. It also stabilizes the chemical production of melatonin by the pineal gland, to promote deeper and more restful sleep.
By reducing the brain's response to stress at the source, acupuncture is just as effective as Western medication. In clinical study, acupuncture combined with psychotherapy had a 90.7% success rate at treating postpartum depression, and fluoxetine had a 90.5% success rate.
Patients treated with acupuncture did not report any of the side effects or symptoms of withdrawal that patients taking fluoxetine experienced.
For the maximum effect of the clinical study, patients received 30 acupuncture treatments. Each individual experiences postpartum depression differently and should consult with a licensed acupuncturist before beginning their customized course of treatment.
If you have been battling postpartum depression, start working with your body towards the cure! Call us at (321) 972-2940 to schedule an initial health consultation.
HealthCMI. "Acupuncture Alleviates Postpartum Depression." (December 21, 2014). Retrieved from http://www.healthcmi.com/Acupuncture-Continuing-Education-News/1411-acupuncture-alleviates-postpartum-depression
Postpartum Depression.org "Postpartum Depression Statistics." (n.d.) Retrieved from https://www.postpartumdepression.org/resources/statistics/