After a long semester of school, we're all looking for ways to recover and relax. Acupuncture is a form of anxiety and stress reduction that can help you start your summer off right, like pressing the restart button on your body.
Acupuncture doesn't just calm the body, but the mind and spirit as well. In a 2013 study conducted by the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies, students who underwent a 20-minute acupuncture session were found to have reduced anxiety and better memory immediately afterward than those who didn't. "Whether treating anxiety, depression, or insomnia, acupuncture is one of the best tools to help train the mind to be as clear and stress-free as possible," explains Juhi Singh, an acupuncturist, Chinese herbalist and medicine specialist and founder of the Juhi Center in New York City. And while Acupuncture is only one thing you can do to relax, it's an important one when workplace and school burnout is officially kicking in.
Not too long ago, I tried Acupuncture for the first time. I personally went to The Brooklyn Acupuncture Project, but two other places in New York that are reasonably priced are Ming Health and Joyce Acupuncture NYC. When you go in for your first appointment, your Acupuncturist will start by asking you which symptoms you're looking to treat. They'll also ask about any medications you take, your medical history, and any other health concerns you have. During the session, they will insert long, thin needles into different pressure points on your body. Depending on the pressure points used, this could take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes. You likely won't feel instant gratification. Most acupuncture treatments are intended to be repeated. Some people say they feel immediate improvements, but most notice subtle and gradual changes with repeated visits. I've only been once and will definitely be going back since I felt less anxious after. At first, I was worried it was going to hurt since the Acupuncturist sticks needles into your face, but as I laid there, I felt a surge of relaxation throughout my body. Once you’re there for a few minutes, you slowly forget that you are lying there with needles sticking out of your skin. Which don’t hurt, by the way. It just feels like a little pinch.
Image by Cameron Schroeder