We will never stop talking about mental health
We are talking about mental health, a topic near and dear to all of us at The Village. We’ve seen an increase in mental health concerns in our practices and we want you to know we are here to help.
Last May we had an incredible blog with all of us talking about mental health.This month we’re doing it again for many reasons, including:
1. We will never stop talking about mental health.
2. We will never stop treating it.
Mental-health issues come in all shapes and sizes. This May I want to talk to a specific group of people: MOMS, aka momma, mum, mommy, ma, mmm or, my new personal favourite, Brahhh!
Being a mom-brah means everything to me. As of this May, I’ve been a mom for 10 years, with all its accompanying ups and downs. I’ve also have had the pleasure of treating many, many moms. And, to be clear, I use “mom” broadly. What makes a mom is not having birthed a child, it’s the whole spectrum of dreaming, wanting, carrying and supporting a young soul on a journey to self discovery.
I have had moments when my best friends had to haul me out of the trenches or when my mental load was just too heavy to carry and I had to ask for help. I’ve yelled, kicked, screamed, cried, laughed and loved my way through these last 10 years. I’m now happy to report that thanks to my practice, to receiving acupuncture, to my team of experts here at The Village, and to my family, I’ve pulled through some tough times.
I want you moms to know that The Village is where you can find solace and put down your mental load. And, YES, I’ll ask you about your cycle because, YES, this plays a huge role in our mental-health landscape. We will balance hormones, get you some good sleeps, and build you the resilience you need to raise a generation of woke humans.
This may not be how you pictured yourself as a mom, but trust me when I say you’re right where you need to be.
So here’s to you, mom-brahh, I’ve got you.
I ask everyone I see in the clinic “How’s it going?” twice. The first time the answer is usually “Fine.” So I ask again “How’s it really going?” Because most of us are fine, we are getting through the day to day. But there is usually another level and I want to know about both your physical and mental health because all our bodies do not function as separate systems. When stressed / depressed / anxious, you might lose your appetite, have trouble sleeping, hormones go wild — the list is endless. Knowing where you are in your mental health helps me understand what the root of an issue may be and informs the points I choose.
Folks have remarked that an appointment will sometimes feel like a counselling session as they unload all their stuff. And while it is not, I am grateful that people feel they can share with me and let me hold their worries, complaints and emotions while they are with me.
I think the last time we talked about mental health, I said we had come a long way but there was still a ways to go. This is still true and I think will remain true — we can always do better. Thankfully, acupuncture is a holistic medicine that takes into account your WHOLE being, body AND mind. They are so connected!
I am often *not so* secretly treating your mental wellness as much if not more than your physical body. I would say for most of us, our mental health has taken a nosedive over the last few years. And yet it is also showing us how resilient we are, and that it’s ok to share our experiences with each other.
The day I found out acupuncture could influence the mental wellbeing of others was the day I fell down the rabbit hole to Aculand.
“What is acupuncture, and what do you mean poking sharp objects into someone can make them LESS anxious?”
I came to find it wasn’t just anxiety either, but with consistent treatments it can also provide additional support in dealing with general mood swings, depressive episodes, or even more complex diagnoses such as Bipolar disorder, PTSD, ADHD and more.
What this meant was, an acupuncturist could not only help people deal with tangible pain like the person with sore knees that keep them from participating in their favorite sport, or a shoulder that keeps them from being able to pick up their kiddo. But an acupuncturist could also help people deal with the unseen, our invisible pain; like the pain that comes when you breathe in but feel like you’re never getting quite enough air, or the pain of being completely immobilized by the weight of your thoughts. Pain we carry in the nooks and crannies of our psyche that go unattended and eventually finds itself manifesting as a migraine, sleepless nights, or “insert ailment here”.
The rabbit hole that led me straight to this newfound knowledge that Chinese medicine can access and nourish the all-important mind-body connection is ultimately the rabbit hole that sealed my fate into becoming an acupuncturist with special interest in mental health.
You may as well start calling me Alice, in which case, allow me to be the first to welcome you to Aculand. Rumor has it we’re all a little mad here but the good news is there’s some acupoints for that.