Stress-Related Addiction May Be Treated with Acupuncture or Massage
There are a lot of reasons why the average person begins to feel stressed out at any given moment. In today’s world it isn’t difficult to get overwhelmed or feel anxiety, or to succumb to unhealthy temptations in an effort to control those emotions. Between the lure of drugs and/or alcohol and the disguised promise of pharmaceuticals, it can be a daunting task to find any sort of effective treatment for tension (or for the addiction that is a result of it for that matter). Because of the mounting risks associated with drug addiction and stress, many people are turning to more holistic methods of healing relaxation.
In fact, according to a study performed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (part of the National Institutes of Health), too much stress is actually a leading cause for several health-related conditions. Research shows how those who suffer from anxiety or depression are at a serious risk of developing problems such as heart disease, high blood pressure, stomach ulcers, eating disorders, and even drug addiction. Moreover, addicts who are hooked on drugs due to stress are more likely to relapse during treatment than those who are addicted for some other reason. This paints the picture as to why so many people are looking for ways to permanently reduce their stress levels, or at least naturally manage it somehow.
The Stress and Addiction Connection
Thanks to recent studies, we now know that there is a clear connection between stress levels and a person’s likelihood to become a drug addict. Put simply, stress makes a person vulnerable to addiction, and even to eventual relapse if they choose to get help. The feelings associated with high levels of stress or anxiety actually trigger the brain to seek out a means of treatment. Often this includes self-medicating with the use of drugs or alcohol. Research shows that stress literally reinstates drug-seeking behavior in mammals – and as you know, we fit into that group.
Being stressed out a lot should never be an excuse for abusing drugs or alcohol. Still, the mere fact that elevated stress levels can lead to eventual drug addiction due to our fundamental makeup is quite thought-provoking. Stress can be a serious cause of drinking, and the drinking leads to the poor decision, like getting behind the wheel. This means that human beings have a responsibility to manage their stress in the most constructive way possible. It demonstrates our ability to recognize problems and work through them, but drug addiction is a hallmark of apathy. Instead of succumbing to the temptation of hiding, perhaps you could find out what is truly happening inside you. That way you can develop the best approach to managing your stress – one that does not involve the abuse of drugs.
Understanding Why Stress Is so Detrimental
There is good stress and bad stress. Good stress makes you more productive, intuitive, and creative. Bad stress can lead to chronic health problems, social issues, and self-medicating. Bad stress can also wreak havoc on the body if it is not managed correctly, and especially if it is treated by abusing drugs or alcohol. There are few things sadder than a poor stressed-out soul who has been lost to addiction because no viable option was discovered.
You are not alone if you feel high levels of stress or the urge to use drugs because of it. The National Institute of Mental Health stated in a recent study that as much as 90% of modern doctor’s visits are scheduled due to stress-related ailments. Apparently, more needs to be done by today’s patient to manage stress when the doctor is away. In fact, the Mayo Clinic reported just last year that over 43% of adults in America suffer from some sort of adverse side effect(s) due to severe or chronic stress, with many of them ultimately becoming drug addicts.
Understanding What Addiction Does to the Body
Stress is already detrimental to a person’s health, causing such problems as headache, acne, diabetes, asthma, and arthritis. Mix in a drug or alcohol addiction and you have quite the lethal cocktail. While a lot of people become addicts because they are looking for a quick and efficient way to relax, most of the substances used to do this actually create the opposite effect (especially if they are abused). Over time, this bad habit can translate into serious health problems or can cause issues with the inability to properly manage bodily functions, regulate mood, recognize spatial orientation, and improve cognitive awareness.
Drug addiction leaves the body and mind wanting more – either more drugs or more solutions. Since taking more drugs or drinking more alcohol tends to just make matters worse, health experts often recommend more natural remedies. Aside from simple abstinence or mindfulness, there are a couple viable options for those who are serious enough about their stress or addiction to try some treatment alternatives, namely massage and/or acupuncture.
How Acupuncture and/or Massage Can Correct the Effects of Stress and Addiction
For thousands of years, acupuncture has been used by people from all walks of life in an effort to relieve stress, balance hormones, improve mood, and promote feelings of relaxation. Ancient Chinese developers of this discipline initially theorized that the body contained certain nerve centers which, when stimulated, caused certain positive effects. While it is not yet medically nor scientifically understood exactly why acupuncture works, there is no denying its effectiveness or its staying power in today’s holistic health fields.
Acupuncture, or even simple massage, can create a sense of ease and relaxation where there was none before. It can rewire your thought process and keep you from taking drugs or relapsing after an addiction recovery. In fact, it wasn’t too long ago that Fox News was running a special segment about the stress-relieving properties of acupuncture and massage, and nothing has changed. Both methods are highly effective for stress management and reduction, which in turn can ultimately render a person much less susceptible to developing a drug or alcohol addiction. Just be sure to speak with a doctor or professional acupuncturist before you begin, especially if you are unsure about anything.