Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can develop after
exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which grave physical harm occurred or was
threatened. Traumatic events that may trigger PTSD include violent personal assaults,
natural or human-caused disasters, accidents, or military combat. Any situation causing
emotional, physical or mental trauma can result in PTSD. The use of acupuncture for
PTSD has been scientifically proven to show reduced anxiety levels and stress in
individuals. In the past few years acupuncture has been shown to be one of the most
effective treatments for PTSD.
A study published in June 2007 in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease showed
that acupuncture "provided large treatment effects for PTSD" similar to those seen after
counseling and therapy. The study also showed that acupuncture was able to reduce
PTSD symptoms, while also continuing to reduce those symptoms even three months
after treatment ended
PTSD symptoms can be extremely disruptive to daily life and can include depression,
anger, persistent frightening thoughts and memories, sleep problems and a feeling of
numbness or detachment. Now, the U.S. military is effectively treating PTSD with
alternative therapies. Other major problems seen from warfare which acupuncture is
also used for are: acute and chronic pain, acute and chronic stress disorders, and side
effects from a concussion.
In an effort to find new ways to effectively fight PTSD, the U.S. Department of Defense
is employing counseling programs and is exploring alternative treatments, including
acupuncture. Innovative PTSD programs launched at Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas in
2007 are believed to be the first comprehensive efforts of their kind in the military -
importantly, they combine alternative therapies and traditional treatments for soldiers
with PTSD.
When considering treatment therapies for PTSD, stress, anxiety, or other emotional
issues acupuncture is non invasive and effective treatment. It is free of side effects
commonly seen from prescription medications and offers a plethora of other health
benefits by treating the whole person.
Dr. Pamela Langenderfer is a licensed naturopathic physician and licensed
acupuncturist. She is the co owner of Lakeside Holistic Health, PLLC with locations in
Coeur d Alene, ID and Liberty Lake, WA. She can be reached at (208)758-0568 or visit
our website at