Study: Acupuncture works for depression

A recent British study found people with depression may benefit as much from acupuncture as they do from counseling.

University of York researchers studied 755 moderately or severely depressed people and found those who received acupuncture or counseling reported lower depression scores than those who received neither treatment.

"Even a patient who is acutely depressed, for whatever circumstances are surrounding their life, they oftentimes will notice benefit with acupuncturem in terms of improving their mood, just feeling a state of calm and engaging in that relaxation response," said Jamie Starkey, lead acupuncturist at Cleveland Clinic's Wellness Institute.

About 70 percent of the people involved in the project were taking antidepressants a few months before the study began.

Researchers say if the medication is not effective enough counseling and/or acupuncture could provides an additional treatment option.

"A multi-disciplinary approach is always best in my opinion," said Starkey. "Acupuncture with usual care, counseling with usual care, a multi-disciplinary approach oftentimes will lead to a better end-result."

Complete findings for this study can be found in the journal "PLOS Medicine."

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