Inadequate sleep or sleep problems like insomnia is pretty common amongst Australian adults. A 2016 sleep survey by the Sleep Health Foundation found that about 33 – 45% of adults in Australia struggle to get adequate sleep and these issues are common in all age groups.
A couple of sleepless nights don’t seem like a big issue but sleep problems can have a huge impact on your life and health if these conditions go on for too long. Sleep deprivation has been linked to health conditions like heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, and obesity. These conditions can also have an impact on your daytime performance and can affect your safety while driving or while working with dangerous tools or machinery.
There are quite a few different types of treatments for sleep problems. Natural treatments include following a diet, creating a sounder environment, and following a specific sleep schedule. Western medical treatments usually involve treating the condition with drugs that induce sleep like sleeping pills. But one of the best and most effective treatments for sleep is acupuncture.
The Science Behind Acupuncture for Improved Sleep
Some believe that acupuncture triggers the release of peptides in your body that stimulate the opioid receptors in your brain. These receptors control pain, reward, and addictive behaviours. The pain-relieving and sleep-inducing effects of these peptides assist in improving sleep patterns.
Others believe that acupuncture stimulates your neurohormonal pathways which assist in the release of beta-endorphin hormones. These hormones can make us feel happy and relaxed. Acupuncture also decreases inflammatory markers which can reduce pain and inflammation. The reduction of inflammation and pain and happier feelings naturally help you sleep better.
How Chinese Medicine Views the Effects of Acupuncture on Sleep
Traditional medicine has been used to naturally induce sleep for centuries. This treatment is thought to increase the serotonin levels in your brain. These neurotransmitters assist in hormone functioning and are believed to control your mood and induce sleep.
Acupuncture also increases the GABA levels in your body. These neurotransmitters promote relaxation and rest which assists in better sleep quality.
Acupuncture sessions are also extremely relaxing and soothing. These treatments are wonderful for reducing body and muscle tension and for relaxing your mind and body.
What Sleep Conditions Can Be Treated With Acupuncture?
Since acupuncture is a natural remedy that triggers your natural neurotransmitters, it can be practical for all sorts of sleep problems. Acupuncture is often used to treat insomnia, sleep apnea, menopausal night sweats that could affect your sleep, anxiety, and other mental health conditions that might impact your sleep.
Different types of acupuncture techniques like body acupuncture, auricular acupuncture, acupressure, electro-acupuncture, or moxibustion can all be used to treat different sleep conditions.
How Long Does Acupuncture Take To Work?
Acupuncture evaluations and treatments usually take about 60 minutes while subsequent treatments can be done in as little time as 30 minutes. Patients usually need about two treatments per week to treat a single sleep issue or other medical conditions. Everyone doesn’t respond to acupuncture treatments in the same way. Some have more severe conditions than others and may require more acupuncture sessions than others. Some can see immediate results with their first acupuncture sessions and might not need additional treatments. It all depends on your body and the severity of your condition.
Acupuncture is a terrific treatment option to consider for anyone who has a tough time getting enough sleep. If you are struggling to get enough sleep at night then it is time to make a booking with Evergreen CMC. With the help of your acupuncturist and a few other lifestyle suggestions, you could be sleeping like a baby in just a few days.