Chiropractic Care for Anxiety: How Can It Help?
Can Chiropractic Care reduce anxiety? Maybe: reports are mixed. Try mainstream anxiety treatment first. If that doesn’t help, then read on.
Can Chiropractic Care Help Anxiety?
Anxiety disorders affect millions of people in the United States each year, causing a variety of physical and mental symptoms that can significantly impact quality of life. Symptoms such as panic attacks, tension headaches, muscle tension, and poor sleep can be particularly debilitating, making it difficult to carry out daily activities or enjoy life to the fullest.
If you have anxiety, and especially if you have anxiety and have tried most remedies under the sun from antidepressants to alcohol to xanax, valium and cognitive behavioral therapy and found that these all have some benefits and some drawbacks, and especially if they didn’t clear your anxiety, you are going to try anything.
You may have heard that a chiropractor can relieve or even take away your anxiety, and you will find websites that promise this. But is it true?
Read on and find out.
The Case For Chiropractic Care in Anxiety
While anti-anxiety medication and therapy are commonly used to treat mental health problems, chiropractic care is another natural way to address physical symptoms of anxiety and promote overall health.
Chiropractic treatment involves spinal adjustments and other forms of spinal manipulation, which can help to restore proper alignment and function of the spinal cord and central nervous system.
Studies have shown that chiropractic adjustments can have a positive impact on physical health and mental well-being. One study found that chiropractic sessions can lower blood pressure, reduce heart rate, and improve blood flow throughout the body, which can help to alleviate symptoms of chronic stress and anxiety.
Recent research has shown that chiropractic care can be a very effective way to manage chronic anxiety and pain. In a case study conducted by medical doctors, chiropractic manipulation was found to have a significant decrease in tension-type headaches and pain intensity. Moreover, chiropractic care has been found to improve immune system function, lower blood pressure, and improve overall quality of life.
Chiropractic care can also help to reduce tension headaches, neck pain, and back pain, all of which are common symptoms of anxiety. Through spinal manipulation and massage therapy, chiropractors can alleviate muscle tension and promote the mind-body connection, which can help to reduce physical symptoms and improve overall health.
In addition to physical benefits, chiropractic care can also have a positive impact on mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety. By promoting proper alignment and function of the spine and central nervous system, chiropractic care can help to improve sleep patterns, reduce muscle tension, and alleviate physical symptoms associated with anxiety attacks.
Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of chiropractic care is that it is a natural and non-invasive approach to treating physical and mental health issues. Unlike anti-anxiety medication, which can have unwanted side effects, chiropractic care has no known side effects and can be used in conjunction with other treatments for mental health disorders.
More About The Benefits of Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic care is a holistic approach to health and wellness that addresses both physical and emotional health concerns. When the spine is misaligned, it can cause a range of physical symptoms, such as joint pain, muscular tension, and upset stomach. In addition, spinal misalignment is also a common symptom of anxiety and chronic stress. Chiropractic manipulation can help to alleviate physical pain and improve the body’s function, while also promoting emotional health through the mind-body approach.
One of the main reasons why chiropractic care is such a natural solution for anxiety and depression is that it focuses on the entire body, rather than just specific areas of the body. By addressing spinal misalignment and muscular tension, chiropractors can help to improve blood circulation, boost energy levels, and decrease cortisol levels in the body. Cortisol is a hormone that is released in response to stress and can contribute to weight gain, hormonal imbalances, and mood swings.
A closer look at the autonomic nervous system, which controls many of the body’s functions, reveals that chiropractic care can help to balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for the “fight or flight” response to stress, while the parasympathetic nervous system promotes relaxation and healing. By restoring proper alignment of the spine, chiropractic care can help to regulate the autonomic nervous system and promote a more balanced state of being.
Chiropractic care also encourages lifestyle changes that can support emotional health, such as exercise, healthy eating, and stress management techniques. Exercise, in particular, has been shown to release feel-good hormones and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. By incorporating small changes into daily life, such as regular chiropractic adjustments and exercise, individuals can improve their emotional health and overall well-being.
Chiropractic Care For Anxiety: Is There Any Evidence?
The problem is that it is hard to know what is true anymore. You will certainly find people in favor of chiropractic care for anxiety, but quite often, those people have businesses based on selling you chiropractic services.
That isn’t to say, and I’m not saying that all chiropractors will sign up you whether they believe it will help or not.
So let’s look at what real people say about this, and the best place for opinions is Reddit!
9 Years ago, a young woman was seeking advice on whether a chiropractic adjustments could help panic and anxiety.
One honest chiro said, ‘Possibly,’ and cited a research paper:
This refers to a study from 1988, so it’s quite old but it was published in a reputable journal. It was a study size on 21 patients, which is a tiny sample.
However, it had a reasonable design: treatment, placebo and no treatment, and it found that with those being actively treated systolic and diastolic blood pressure pressure decreased and anxiety measures decreased.
I have to say that it is widely cited that 60% of any benefit from any therapy is due to someone taking care and interest and trying to help and as humans, we respond well to care from others (in general).
4 years ago (https://www.reddit.com/r/Chiropractic/comments/b6sad6/will_a_chiropractor_help_with_anxiety/) someone asked a similar question and a chiropractor answered:
“Im a chiropractor. If I had a patient with anxiety, I would recommend they seek counselling or see a psychchologist. Someone trained to manage it specifically.”
Someone else adds,
“I struggled with panic disorder. An SSRI was the biggest help. Also having Xanax on hand helps, but Xanax is addictive and you need to be careful about not taking it too often. A chiropractor won’t help at all.”
Then another chiropractor adds, that he/she has several patients with anxiety and they have noticed a significant decrease in severity and frequency of attacks.
7 Years ago, a patient writes:
“I booked an appointment and after a quick examination he concluded that two of my cervical and one thoracic vertebrae were out. He did some realignments and when I stood up from the table I could immediately feel the difference. It was like a veil had been lifted, and since then I’ve been feeling absolutely fantastic (It’s only been 3 days but still, the difference is astounding). I still feel slightly anxious but it is so much better and easier to deal with now.”
4 years ago another patient wrote:
“Hi, I do have PTSD and anxiety, but I just finished the first 3 Chiro treatments of my life and my pain is much better, but Im having waves of anxiety. Im trying to do heavy housework to get out of it and its not stopping. I know that some people experience emotional stuff after Chiro or a flushing out of past traumas, is this normal and if so when will it end?”
Conclusion: Can A Chiropractor Help With Anxiety?
Maybe. There is no solid research and there are anecdotal comments from both people it has helped and those it has not. There are are also comments from chiros in support and not in support.
If I had the money, and nothing else had worked, I would give it a go, but it wouldn’t be my first priority.
My first response, would be to follow the general advice and seek therapy, probably CBT and seek medication, probably an SSRI.
If they don’t work, then I would understand why people would try less mainstream solutions, including chiropractic care.