Dr. Mindy Boxer -Can Acupuncture Help with Depression?

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As mental health issues have come to the forefront in recent years, many have sought more natural treatment options that don’t involve pharmaceuticals and their potentially harmful effects. Acupuncture has become a popular option for treating mental health issues, including depression. But does it work? Before we answer that question, let’s give a proper definition to both acupuncture and depression.

Acupuncture Defined 

Acupuncture can be simply defined as thin needles (the width of a human hair) inserted into specific parts of the body called “points” or “meridians.” Where the needles get inserted depends on the issue being treated. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (also known as TCM) it is taught that the body has a flow of energy or qi that regulates a person’s health. If this flow of energy is disrupted, illness can occur. Applying the acupuncture needles to these specific points can put the body back in balance and get the energy flowing as it should.

Depression Defined

WebMD defines depression as “an illness that involves constant feelings of sadness and a loss of interest or pleasure.” They also define additional symptoms as difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much, lack of energy, suicidal thoughts, drastic changes to weight and appetite, irritability, difficulty concentrating, remembering things or even making decisions, and feelings of guilt or worthlessness. Depression is most often treated with medication or therapy or a combination of both. The disheartening thing is that, according to WebMD, “between 19 and 34% of people with depression don’t improve with these more traditional treatments. This has led to more people looking for alternative treatments including Acupuncture.

What the Research Says

2010 study stated that, “Depression and anxiety together constitute a significant contribution to the global burden of disease. Acupuncture is widely used for the treatment of anxiety and depression and use is increasing. The theoretical basis for Acupuncture diagnosis and treatment derives from traditional Chinese medicine theory. An alternative approach is used in medical Acupuncture which relies more heavily on contemporary neurophysiology and conventional diagnosis.”

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If you suffer from feelings of anxiety and depression, talk to me to develop the appropriate treatment plan.  I will take a detailed health history and examination to help you determine the best course of action.

Studies have shown that the right “dose” of Acupuncture was the key in helping patients see results and a reduction of the symptoms of stress and depression. A “dose” is defined as both the number of treatment sessions overall, as well as the number of acupuncture points addressed in each session. Studies have also shown that Acupuncture can help to get heart rate variability back to an optimal range which can help improve issues with heart disease, hypertension, anxiety and depression, insomnia, migraines, and muscle pain.

While the number of studies is still few, there are many encouraging studies demonstrating great results for those suffering from feelings of anxiety and depression. In addition to regular Acupuncture treatments, I  can also recommend herbal supplements and nutritional and dietary changes that can also get your energy back in balance. And once you find your energy back in balance, there is a cascade of health benefits that can come from regular Acupuncture treatments. Do not suffer another day. Call today and schedule your appointment so you can get a treatment plan in place and get back into balance.


Dr. Mindy Boxer is a holistic practitioner who has grown into her specialties in an organic way. Understanding a range of disciplines allows her to integrate the wisdom of Ancient healing in combination with the most recent innovations in Scientific research. This dynamic blend has enabled Dr. Boxer to help patients in the prevention and treatment of disease for over 25 years.
At age 15, Dr. Boxer began her lifelong practice of Yoga & Meditation, read many Nutrition books, began Juicing her Vegetables, and explored and all Raw Diet.  Recognizing the importance of Nutrition in overall health, she earned her Ph.D. in 1986 in Nutrition and Human Behavior, providing her with a solid foundation to counsel and educate patients on how to attain health and vitality.
Her informative Lectures and appetizing Cooking Classes were the perfect forum to educate the community about the effects of food on Mood and Behavior, as well as in innovative ways to balance Body Chemistry in order to achieve overall well being.
Sensing a need to expand her training and understanding of the human body as a whole system, Dr. Boxer continued her studies in Acupuncture & Chinese Herbal Medicine,  and in 1993 earned a Masters Degree in Traditional Oriental Medicine. She is licensed by the Medical Board of the State of California in Acupuncture and Herbal Medicine and is also licensed by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine.
These diverse disciplines give Dr. Boxer a unique view of the human body and how to keep it functioning in an optimal manner. Her practice of Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs and Functional Nutrition have a profound effect on Hormonal balance, Rejuvenation, and Immune system enhancement.

Dr. Boxer has a particularly keen understanding of Women’s Health issues including Gynecological irregularity, PMS, Fertility, IUI & UVF support, Healthy Pregnancy & Delivery, and Menopausal issues. Her interest in the human body as a dynamic system has given her the understanding to deal with such problems as improper Digestion and elimination, Cancer Support, Allergies, back pain, tight neck and shoulders, carpal tunnel syndrome, respiratory distress, chronic fatigue, Insomnia, Stress, Anxiety and Depression.
She has also studied the art and science of Homeopathy, earning her Diplomate in Homeopathy from the Hahnemann College of Homeopathy in 1995. This allows her to treat the whole person — physically, mentally, emotionally.

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