Hello, I've had fatigue, muscle stiffness, and sleeping problems for the past 3 years due to an extremely stressful college semester. I managed to graduate last year January but at the cost of running my body down. Seeing a psychiatrist was the last thing I wanted to do but I decided to give it a try. He claimed I had depression so since the start of this year until now, I've taken 3 worthless antidepressants which haven't worked at all and only given me side effects. Now he wants to prescribe another by next month. I'm fed up with his treatments and I've always been skeptical that I had depression.
My thought is that stress had accumulated in my body over the years to the point that it couldn't handle the stress anymore. For some reason, activating relaxation is very difficult for me. Even when I was taking judo in my middle school to high school years, I couldn't relax during our meditation sessions. Additionally, supplements and herbs that are supposed to induce relaxation like chamomile, 5-HTP, melatonin, kava kava, etc. have no effect on me. Even a muscle relaxant my physician prescribed to me last year didn't work and only made me sleepy. It's as if I'm resistant to such relaxants. That's why I've decided to give acupuncture a try. I've been to an acupuncturist a few years back who specialized in Chinese acupuncture, but his treatments didn't do anything for me including the red ginseng and astragalus. At the end, he was confused why I wasn't improving. I've also seen one who specializes in Japanese acupuncture last year and her treatments were pretty effective so I've recently started going to her again since I have insurance. I'm being hopeful, but I was wondering can acupuncture activate the relaxation response to the point that it can eliminate pent up stress? Can it help me to consciously activate relaxation after treatments are done like when I do deep breathing exercises?