Portrait of a young woman suffering from insomnia

In today’s fast paced stressed-out world insomnia and sleep disorders are on the increase. The proverbial good night’s sleep seems more elusive than ever. So many people are facing sleepless nights, and fear the side effects and addictive nature of sleep medications. Luckily, acupuncture offers a safe and natural solution.

A preliminary report in 2004 found that acupuncture increased nighttime melatonin production and total sleep time with patients who have been diagnosed with anxiety,. The patients who received acupuncture also fell asleep faster, were less aroused at night, and were less stressed.

A 2014 study published in Asian Journal of Psychiatry found that acupuncture may be as effective as the sedative drug zolpidem (Ambien) in alleviating sleeplessness. In addition, a 2009 meta-analysis of 46 randomized trials that involved 3,881 patients found that acupuncture is extremely effective in easing insomnia.

From the perspective of Western medicine, acupuncture helps regulate various hormones and neurotransmitters- including melatonin, serotonin, endorphins and many others- that play major roles in sleep regulation, according to a recent study from Emory University School of Medicine.

Acupuncture strengthens the body’s ability to heal itself. When tension and pain are removed, you eliminate much of what is causing the insomnia. Chinese medicine sees insomnia as symptom, not a disease. People present with different patterns and therefore require different treatment protocols and herbs.