8 Concepts of Mental Health from Acupuncture Theory

  1. Three treasures of humans are our Chi (energy), Jing (structure/essence) and Shen (spirit/vitality/consciousness). Mental state and emotions directly impact the Shen and the Chi. 

2. Shen (spirit/vitality/consciousness) is expressed in the eyes. A good Shen is full of light and awareness, without chaotic movements. A depleted Shen is lacking energy and enthusiasm, and seems heavy or sad. 

3. The facial complexion expresses three things: the Shen, the Heart Blood (important for circulation, nutrition, and energy) and the Stomach Yin (digestion and nutrition). Two main cause of lifestyle disease or un-balanced living are emotions and alimentation, in other words, our mental state and the things we eat and drink. Research has named this and includes the microbiome in the “gut-brain axis”. Eating improperly for our body type or “eating our feelings” is sub-optimal alimentation that causes weaknesses of the chi over time. 

4. Strong emotions have varying effects on the health of the Chi:

Excess joy (mania) slows the chi. 

Worry ties the chi in knots. 

Sadness / grief deplete the chi. 

Anger flares the chi upwards. 

Fear or shock scatter the chi. 

5. A calm, balanced spirit which is “returning to center” or as the old Taoist text Secret of the Golden Flower states it, “turns the light around” is nurturing and protecting the chi. Turning the light around, or ever returning to one’s natural and balanced state, is preserving and growing the helpful chi, and preventing leaks of energy which deplete the chi. 

6. Tai chi and Qi gong are full of gentle, graceful, full-range-of-motion movements that allow Chi to express with freedom, without becoming chaotic. 

7. Acupuncture moves and regulates the chi, and returns balance to the body Yin and Yang. It is said that “all dis-ease starts with the Shen”. This means that the state of our mental health directly influences physical health. An unbalanced mind has the potential to create an unbalanced way of living, which impacts the body. 

8. The ancient Chinese character for “Healing” depicts a heart (Shen) in a boat headed in an away-direction. Healing means a journey to the “other shore”, or moving the heart, one’s consciousness, to another shore which is a new perspective. Taking the next positive step in our life is healing. 


Top Things to Know about Acupuncture

  • It is an ancient AND modern healthcare option that is helps live free of inflammation, pain, anxiety, and excesses of medication.
  • Acupuncture practitioners are generalists and Licensed + Board Certified Acupuncturists can help with a wide variety of conditions.
  • The field of acupuncture has over 3000 years of history, and decades of modern research supporting it.
  • World Health Organization recognizes acupuncture as an effective healthcare option, well suited for treating common concerns including : back pain, anxiety including PTSD, depression, weight loss, migraines, muscle pain, digestive complaints, men’s and women’s health along with several more conditions. The World Health Organization lists acupuncture as proven effective for 28+ conditions.
  • Acupuncture treatment focuses on chi (energy), meridians or channels, and acupuncture points. Balancing systems using these and other considerations is a positive and helpful experience that may come as a bit of a surprise to people.
  • It is safe and noninvasive. The modern way of acupuncture uses sterile, single-use needles with a special insertion technique.
  • It does not hurt: Most people relaxed and well during and after treatment. The insertion technique is not-painful for most people who experience acupuncture.
  • Licensed + Board Certified Acupuncturists undergo years long rigorous education and training. They are expected to have plenty of experience even before graduation and to know Anatomy & Physiology, treatment protocols, modern health and wellness science and many other subjects relevant to supporting health.
  • Acupuncture works well with: Conventional medicine, Physical therapy, OsteoStrong, Chiropractic, Yoga, and Ayurveda. Acupuncture improves your chi (energy) flow and cannot interfere negatively with another type of treatment.
  • Perhaps the most important thing to know about acupuncture is: Although everybody has the same acupuncture points on their body, treatment is always individualized. That is why acupuncturists ask about health history, body type, diet, emotions, and your unique goals. They are taking this information to adapt the treatment to your needs. That is how it has been done for over one-thousand years, and therein is it’s strength. Acupuncture is the medicine that adapts to the person.

What does Acupuncture Help With?

In a traditional and a modern sense both, Acupuncture is used to address many health concerns. It may not be possible to provide a complete list of everything that acupuncture can do. There are as many kinds of acupuncture point combinations as there are people. One of the strengths of this traditional Asiatic medicine is that it is highly individualized. As research progresses, the list may evolve.

General / Wellness: preventative medicine, wellness maintenance, whole body health, relaxation, meditative states

Mental / Emotional: anxiety, stress, depression, PTSD, seasonal depression (SAD), test anxiety

Immune system: chronic colds, ear infections, sinusitis, autoimmune disorders, allergies, low immunity

Energy and sleep: chronic fatigue syndrome, general fatigue, insomnia, sleep apnea, jet lag

Pain conditions: headache/ migraines, arthritis, inflammation, back pain, low back pain, neck pain, sciatica, sport injury, fibromyalgia, TMJ syndrome

Digestion: constipation, poor digestion, IBS, bloating, food sensitivities

Women’s health: hot flashes, menopause, PMS, menstruation issues, cramps, heavy periods, fertility

Men’s health: erectile dysfunction, fertility, prostate health

Other: Eye and vision problems, smoking cessation, breaking the cycle of addictions, urinary disorders, liver and kidney function

Introduction to Acupuncture in Mobile, AL

Family Care Acupuncture is located in Mobile, Alabama on Cottage Hill Road. Here is what you need to know, in a list:

Traditional, classical acupuncture treatments are provided.

  • Helps a variety of conditions including pain, anxiety, chronic conditions, digestive problems, smoking, stress, sleep troubles, trauma or injury aftermath, low energy, and more.
  • This clinic treats most health concerns that acupuncture is known to help with. Calling to speak with a practitioner is the most sure way to find out if you are a good candidate for acupuncture.
  • This clinic also services a variety of non-urgent concerns like wellness, relaxation, whole body health (preventative / proactive sessions) and acupuncture for a centered mind similar to meditation.
  • The acupuncture tradition here is old: coming from the heritage of the translated classical medical texts by French-Vietnamese acupuncture physicians Dr. Nguyen Van Nghi and Dr. Tran Viet Dzung.
  • The practitioners here are friendly and professional, focusing on more than just a problem. Licensed + Board Certified Acupuncturists here will help you reclaim your health, find balance, and enjoy life more.
  • Acupuncture is a great complement to almost any health routine, designed since its origins to be universal and treat people from all walks of life.
  • Acupuncturists are generally known to have integrity, be kind and nonjudgmental, and cultivate relaxing space in their clinics.
  • Most acupuncture does not hurt even with needle insertion, and people surprisingly find the experience to be calming and soothing.
  • Acupuncture is a safe, noninvasive system that has been proven by 3000+ years of traditional use and decades of research.