After 15 years of practice I can say with certainty that one of the main things that keeps people from trying Chinese medicine treatment is the fact that they don’t understand how it could possibly help them with the health issues that they are experiencing.
It is, after all, a system of medicine that came into existence more than 3000 years ago. Long, long before even the most rudimentary modern ideas about how the body functions were imagined. As such, the language that we use to describe health and disease is very different than that used by Western doctors.
When you research Chinese medicine online you are confronted with all of the traditional theories about mysterious substances such as Qi, Yin, Yang, Cold and Damp and it can all be just a little too foreign to wrap your head around. Let me assure you that these are all just different ways of describing the very same physiology and function as Western medicine.
Obviously, the ancient Asian people did not have the means to observe the body at the level of detail that modern Western medicine can. They did not have microscopes, blood panels, MRI’s or ultrasounds so they observed the body based on symptoms and signs that could easily be monitored by the basic human senses. Looking, listening, smelling and touching are all part of traditional Chinese medicine diagnostics.
These concepts about how the body functions in both health and disease were observed and refined over more than a hundred generations.
These ancient physicians kept very careful records which were passed down throughout the millenia. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) schools today we still study these manuscripts and apply these ideas towards our modern practices. We practice Chinese medicine in it’s traditional form because we know that it works as a system.
Although our methods of looking at health and disease are much less complicated than those of the Western medical model they can be extraordinarily effective when dealing with many health issues. I like to use the analogy of Google Maps. When you use Google Maps you can put down all kinds of layers (traffic, satellite, terrain, etc.) but many times the most effective way to find your way from Point A to Point B is just a simple line drawing with the street names. Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best solutions.
Chinese medicine looks at health and disease with a much broader overview of the larger systems of the body and how they interact with one another. Our therapies are meant to support and encourage your body’s miraculous capacity to heal and to regulate it’s own function. The ability of Chinese medicine to stimulate your own innate healing resources can make it dramatically effective for many of the common health conditions that modern people suffer from.
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