Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) dates as far back as 5,000 years ago and has been in existence for a prolonged time span compared to the Western forms of therapy, which have been in practice for a much shorter duration. So what is the underlying principle behind TCM? Well, it’s based on the belief that the normal operations of the body are regulated by a vital force or energy referred to as Qi’. Basically, Qi flows all over the body, between body parts and along paths referred to as meridians’.
According to the Chinese system of medicine, disease or illness is as a result of excesses or deficiencies of Qi or energy flowing through a particular part of the body, causing an unbalanced state of existence. Consequently, TCM uses a selection of techniques to re-establish harmony and balance to the entire body, mind, as well as spirit to sustain total wellness. Many people every so often associate the practice of acupuncture with TCM. This is because acupuncture is arguably the most practiced element of traditional Chinese medicine. Nevertheless, TCM also encompasses a variety of other methods such as acupressure, cupping, moxibustion, magnet therapy and massage techniques such as gua sha and tuina to help patients achieve and retain health.
UNDERSTANDING ACUPUNCTURE FROM THE CHINESE TRADITIONAL PERSPECTIVE
The knowledge of how acupuncture functions has advanced with its practice, however the descriptions laid down from the onset have essentially been retained. Before the advent of microscopes which are used to see individual cells within the body, physicians projected the inner workings of the body based on the environment outside the body. Just like the system of water channels, including rivers, streams, man-made canals, and the ocean, the body boasts of a moving, life-providing fluid known as Qi, and the paths through which it circulated are the meridians.
The flow of Qi across the meridians, similar to the flow of water across a stream, may be clogged by an obstruction across the watercourse such as a fallen tree. In the human body, it might be as a result of something disturbing the body, such as the effect of poor nutrition, physical and psychological stress or injury. If you go to the point of obstruction and remove it, then the water can restart its natural flow. Similarly, if the Qi in the meridian suffers blockage, the body experiences disorders and only the removal of the blockage within the meridian can restore the natural flow.
In a human body, injecting ultra-fine sterile needle at the point of blockage within the meridian will reinstate the free circulation of Qi to re-establish balance and activate the body’s natural healing power. From the above description of the concept of acupuncture, the approach entails: locating the points of disturbance, isolating the key blockage points, and clearing away the blockage in order to rectify a disruption in the circulation of Qi.
AN APPOINTMENT WITH A TRADITIONAL CHINESE MEDICAL PRACTITIONER
On your first visit, a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner will conduct a detailed analysis of your overall health through observation and conversation with a view of finding any imbalances. The TCM practitioner will note your gait, your tone variation, the glare of your eyes as well as examine your tongue and take your pulse. Additionally, your practitioner will also ask for details about your family history, your sleep patterns and emotions. If fitting for women, your child-bearing history and menstrual cycle will also come up as a topic of discussion.
Well, you might be stunned at the depth of discussion and careful assessment you experience with your practitioner. Note that each enquiry and observation is an instrument to assist the practitioner develop an understanding of the unique arrangement of your life energy in order to ascertain the balance and imbalance. Ultimately, a treatment plan is personalised for you to boost the circulation of Qi in your body. Your practitioner may recommend acupuncture, nutritional advice, or a merger of treatments.
CONDITIONS TREATED BY DR. DIEM, MS OF TCM, LAc
Conditions that respond well to TCM include:
- Stroke Residual
- Abdominal Pain
- Chronic Diarrhea
- Allergy (hay fever)
- Common Cold
Skin & Beauty
- Herpes Zoster
- Common Warts
- Menopause Syndrome
- Pain and weakness
- Neck, Shoulders, Arms
- Hands, Fingers
- Knees, Legs & Feet
- Muscle Cramping
- Localized traumatic Injuries
- Sprains or Strains
- Sport Injuries
- Disc problems
- Increases vitality and energy
- Stress reduction
- Skin rejuvenation
- Deep relaxation
- Weight control
- Stop smoking
- Drug and other addictions
- Pain control
- Regulates heart rate
- Blood pressure
- Stabilizes the immune system
Today, TCM and acupuncture are fast turning out to be alternative mainstream treatment alternatives. With an increase in the number of doctors becoming familiar with the models of TCM and acupuncture, modern medicine and TCM will start to complement one another instead of challenging each other.
If you'd like to learn more, feel free to contact us or schedule an appointment.