Chiropractic care has been known to help ease physical pains, but new findings have opened a door of hope for those who seek alternative depression/anxiety treatment to mainstream medication.

A recent study published in theJournal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research found that upper cervical chiropractic care could help lessen anxiety and symptoms of depression.

Decrease in Physical Pain Can Lead to Mental Clarity

Researchers conducted the study based on a 12 sessions of chiropractic intervention for individuals with anxiety and depression symptoms.

“Four of the five study completers expressed satisfaction with the outcome and that they would recommend similar care to others with anxiety or depression,” study researcher Dr. Larry Arbeitman said. “Participants also reported a decrease in muscle tension and pain and an increase in mental clarity and physical energy.”

While researchers from the study were careful to say chiropractic care does not cure depression, it is important to understand the role it can play to relieve pain associated with depression.

Breaking the Cycle of Pain

Some people experience common chronic pain that can be caused by headaches, lower back pain or arthritis. Depression is the most common emotion associated with chronic pain. In fact, depression occurs three to four times more in people with chronic pain than in the general population.

People with chronic pain and depression can suffer changes in their physical, mental and social capacities and their quality of life. Chronic pain can cause difficulty in sleep, agitation, and people cannot perform their normal activities in their daily routine or concentrate.

This combination of pain can lead to a vicious cycle because it leads to depression, which leads to more chronic pain. Sometimes depression can occur before the chronic pain but nonetheless create a cycle.

But through “spinal manipulation,” also known as “chiropractic adjustment,” patients can have mobility restored into their joints and alleviate their physical pain, which can also lead to mental alleviation and milder depression symptoms.

Source: American Chiropractic AssociationJournal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research