What Is Traditional Chinese Medicine? Benefits & What To Expect

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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) offers an alternative approach to health and wellness. As a westerner, Chinese Medicine is literally a foreign concept. It’s not only culturally foreign; it is also 2,000 – 5,000 years old. It’s a medicine that is from a different time and place, but it’s made it’s way to the here and now. The reason for its longevity is it’s time-tested methods and effective results. Here we offer a brief over-view to help you understand what it’s all about.

What Is Traditional Chinese Medicine?

Traditional Chinese Medicine is a complex and sophisticated natural medical system that has existed for thousands of years. It is the primary medical system in many countries and continues to successfully treat millions of people in our modern time. The primary philosophy of Traditional Chinese Medicine focuses on restoring balance to human physiology, which diminishes illness, thus ultimately optimizes health and wellness. Attuning the body to the individual's respective environment creates harmony and health naturally. This is accomplished by using Chinese medical diagnostic methods to assess the patient, and then applying Traditional Chinese medicine treatment methods or modalities with the appropriate treatment plan.

Chinese Medical diagnosis is based on viewing the body as a whole. The Chinese Medicine practitioner works to identify relevant signs and symptoms in order to assess the root problem of the condition.  This is done through inquiry, observation, and palpation. A patient may come in with a sinus infection, but other questions regarding urination and bowel movements will be asked, for example. This is relevant in order to understand the overall picture of health and to determine a patient’s constitution.  Therefore, three different patients may come in for a Chinese Medical treatment suffering from the same complaint, and same Western Medical diagnosis, but they may all receive completely different Chinese Medical diagnosis and treatment. 

The body communicates with the practitioner directly.  Chinese Medicine practitioners will often look at the tongue, feel the radial pulse, and palpate the abdomen to assess the functionality of each of the organ systems.   Relevant findings will confirm a diagnosis and lead to the proper treatment. The most common treatment methods are acupuncture and herbal medicine. These are utilized to send the body signals to retrain the body towards proper physiological function.  The primary focus in Chinese Medicine is to restore function rather than to attack a disease. It is often said that Chinese Medicine treats the person rather than the disease, for this reason can effectively treat a patient experiencing relatively minor health problems, by restoring the immune function, which will then prevent it from evolving into a chronic and/or more detrimental condition.

Benefits of Chinese Medicine

  • For Autoimmune Diseases

  • For Gynecological Conditions

  • For Men’s Reproductive Health

  • For Digestive Disorders

  • For Cardiovascular Disease

  • For Respiratory Issues

  • For Depression, Anxiety, and emotional health

  • For Insomnia

  • For Allergies

  • For Asthma

  • For Fatigue

  • For Hypertension

  • For High Cholesterol

  • For Hyper/Hypothyroidism

  • For Pain

  • For Weight Loss

  • For Acne & Other Skin Disorders

  • For Internal Health

  • For Fertility

  • For Prenatal & Postpartum Care

  • For Colds & Flu

  • And much more…

Traditional Chinese Treatment Methods

There are five main Traditional Chinese medicine treatment methods:

Acupuncture

Acupuncture utilizes the body's meridian system to stimulate health, and balance the body's internal environment, which then resolves health disharmonies and issues. The meridian system is comprised of a circulation system of Qi and Blood, and each meridian is directly related to their own respective internal organ. Acupuncture utilizes the use of hair-thin filiform needles to puncture specific anatomical points on these meridians to influence the circulation and functionality of the internal organs back to a state of health. Acupuncture is commonly known to treat pain syndromes but is very effective at treating a plethora of internal medical problems as well.  Acupuncture treatments may also apply other manual traditional Chinese medicine techniques such as moxibustion, cupping therapy, and guasha.

Chinese Herbal medicine

Chinese Medical Herbology utilizes time-tested and proven herbal combinations that are prescribed to treat a specific Chinese Medical diagnosis.  The Source uses herbal prescriptions are at least 2,000 years old. The formulas, when properly prescribed, will do the minimal amount of intervention necessary to achieve the desired health goal, which minimizes any potential side-effects.

Dietetics

Chinese dietetics applies the energetic qualities of food combined with diet, nutrition, and food therapy to treat specific health conditions based on a Chinese medical diagnosis.

Tuina (Chinese Medical Massage)

Tuina, which roughly translates to “push/pull”, is a Chinese medical massage system that utilizes various massage techniques including acupressure.  Customized tuina treatments are then administered according to the Chinese medical diagnosis.

Qigong (Meditation and movement)

Qigong, which roughly translates to “breath/energy skill” involves mostly slow moving movements coordinated with one’s breath and intention.  Specific exercises may be prescribed to treat respective health conditions.

Conclusion

A different and interesting perspective to health and wellness, which has been established through the rich history and development of Traditional Chinese Medicine, is now acknowledged and available in our local communities.   Chinese Medicine can provide stand-alone healthcare for many health challenges, or it can also provide additional support to your current medical treatment. The Chinese Medicine practitioner at The Source is happy to be of service, and to answer any questions.

The Source is also an herbal dispensary.  If interested, please inquire for a list of the current stock of Traditional Chinese herbs.

Ready To Try Chinese Medicine?

Check out the Traditional Chinese Medicine services we offer right here at The Source!

Lisa O'hara