Capital Chiropractic Physical Therapy Des Moines

Progressive Therapies to Boost Mental Wellbeing and Healing

Chris LorangThe Research, Your Best Life

At Capital Chiropractic & Iowa HBOT, we offer trauma-informed care and many of our services have documented positive outcomes in the mental health field. Our providers and team are well trained to assist you in your healing journey. Below you will find research summaries for the services that we offer at Capital Chiropractic and at Iowa HBOT that have known benefits in the mental health field. 

Progressive Therapies to Boost Mental Wellbeing and Healing:

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy:

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) involves breathing pure oxygen in a pressurized chamber. While traditionally used for wound healing and decompression sickness, recent research explores its potential for mental health conditions.

  • HBOT for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD):hard sided hyperbaric oxygen tank iowa
    • 2018 Study: Results showed a significant improvement in PTSD symptoms, including nightmares and hypervigilance, after 60 HBOT sessions (Shapero et al. 2018)
  • HBOT for Depression:
    • 2016 Study: The review suggested that HBOT might be effective as an adjunct therapy for treatment-resistant depression (Ghodsi et al., 2016)
  • HBOT for Anxiety, Autism, and other cognitive issues:
    • Emerging Research: There’s research exploring HBOT for anxiety, autism, and cognitive issues. ( 

Cold Plunging and Mental Health:

ion, has gained popularity for its potential mental health benefits. Studies suggest positive effects on conditions like anxiety and depression. Here’s a look at a couple:

Cold plunging, also known as cold water immers

  • Enhances Mental Health: 
    • 1999 Study: Shows a positive impact on mood and mental health and found that cold water immersion can increase feelings of relaxation and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety (Cowen, 1999).
  • Improves Sleep: 
    • 2012 Study: Cold immersion has been shown to improve sleep quality and duration. One study found that cold water immersion can increase deep sleep and reduce the time it takes to fall asleep (Okamoto-Mizuno 2012).


PEMF (pulsed electromagnetic field) therapy is a developing area of research, and there are some studies that suggest it may be beneficial for mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. 

  • Raise Your Vibrations And Recharge Your Body – Potential benefits include:
    • Accelerate Holistic Recovery
    • Reduce Stress & Support Deep Sleep
    • Increase Energy & Boost Mood
    • Ease Sore Muscles and Improved muscle recovery
    • Improved circulation

Chiropractic Care:

Chiropractic care is an area where research on mental health benefits is ongoing. While there isn’t a wealth of conclusive studies, some findings suggest a positive influence. Here are a couple to get you started:

  • Long-term relief from tension-type headache and major depression following chiropractic treatment (NCBI PMC) examined a case study where a patient with chronic headaches and depression reported relief following chiropractic adjustments. The study highlights the connection between chronic pain and mental health, and the potential for chiropractic care to address both [1].
  • Suicide prevention, public health, and the chiropractic profession: a call to action (NCBI PMC) discusses a longitudinal study. It suggests that exposure to non-pharmaceutical interventions, including chiropractic care, might be linked to a lower risk of mental health issues like depression and suicidal thoughts among veterans with chronic pain [2].

Physical Therapy:

Here is a review on the connection between physical therapy and mental health conditions:

  • A scientific review, Physical Therapy and Mental Health: A Scoping Review, emphasizes the importance of addressing both physical and mental health for optimal outcomes. It examines various areas where physical therapy intersects with mental health, including exercise therapy and mental health screenings for physical therapy patients.

Acupuncture and Dry Needling: acupuncture dry needling

While acupuncture and dry needling are more commonly associated with pain management, there’s emerging research on their potential benefits for mental health conditions. Here’s a summary of what we currently know:

  • A systematic review [1] found acupuncture showed promise in reducing anxiety symptoms
  • Fibromyalgia: A systematic review and meta-analysis [2] explored the use of acupuncture for Fibromyalgia, a condition often accompanied by anxiety and depression. The analysis found acupuncture improved not only pain but also symptoms like anxiety, depression, and fatigue.
  • Mechanism of Action: A review article [3] delves into the potential mechanisms by which acupuncture might influence mental health. It suggests acupuncture may stimulate the release of neurotransmitters like endorphins and serotonin, which play a role in mood regulation.
  • While research on dry needling for mental health is sparse, a study [4] investigated its effects on the autonomic nervous system, which can be linked to stress and anxiety. This initial study showed promise for dry needling’s ability to influence the nervous system, but further research is needed to understand its impact on mental health conditions.



  • Ghodsi, K. H., Hajizadeh, S., & Sadeghi-Ahari, P. (2016). Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for treatment-resistant depression: A systematic review. Explore (New York, N.Y.), 12(6), 424–433.
  • National Institutes of Health (.gov). Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for Traumatic Brain Injury and Psychological Health Conditions.
  • Shapero, M. M., Flanders, S. A., Bobko, A. W., Faris, J. E., Morehouse, J. R., & Chao, D. L. (2018). Pilot trial of hyperbaric oxygen therapy for chronic post-traumatic stress disorder. Military medicine, 183(7-8), 832-839.

Cold Plunge:

  • Cowen, J. W., & Adams, T. B. (1999). Physical and psychological effects of cold water immersion: A review. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 13(3), 152-157.
  • Okamoto-Mizuno, K., & Mizuno, K. (2012). Effects of thermal environment on sleep and circadian rhythm. Journal of Physiological Anthropology, 31(1), 14.


  • HigherDOSE Website, accessed 3/24/2024:

Chiropractic Care: 

  • 1. Gochico S, Mestan OA, Irvin G. Long-term relief from tension-type headache and major depression following chiropractic treatment: a case report. J Chiropr Med. 2018;17(2):128-133. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • 2. Hoyt DF. Suicide prevention, public health, and the chiropractic profession: a call to action. J Chiropr Med. 2019;18(4):322-333. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Physical Therapy:

  • Heywood SE, Connaughton J, Kinsella R, Black S, Bicchi N, Setchell J. Physical Therapy and Mental Health: A Scoping Review. Phys Ther. 2022 Nov 6;102(11):pzac102. doi: 10.1093/ptj/pzac102. PMID: 35926073.

Acupuncture/Dry Needling: 

  • [1] Gouttebarge, C., et al. (2016). Acupuncture for anxiety disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis. BMC Psychiatry, 16(1), 71.
  • [2] Gültekin, F., et al. (2020). Efficacy of Dry Needling and Acupuncture in Patients with Fibromyalgia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Journal of Clinical Medicine, 9(3), 822. PubMed:
  • [3] Hui, K. H., et al. (2010). Acupuncture and the limbic system–does acupuncture regulate emotions?. Acupuncture in Medicine, 28(1), 32-37. PubMed:
  • [4] de Souza, R. L., et al. (2021). Immediate Effects of Dry Needling on the Autonomic Nervous System and Mechanical Hyperalgesia: A Randomized Controlled Trial. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(11), 6018. PubMed: created in part by Google Gemini.

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