What Are the Benefits of Chinese/Eastern Medicine?
For over 2,000 years, Traditional Chinese Medicine has helped treat numerous illnesses and diseases in people all over the world. In fact, Traditional Chinese Medicine (or, TCM) is very common in the United States, with many Western-educated physicians becoming more knowledgeable about the benefits of TCM and other alternative medical therapies.
What Makes Traditional Chinese Medicine Unique?
The main tenet of TCM is that it treats the whole body and superior health and wellness is only achieved by balancing the patient's spirit, mind, and body. One way this is accomplished is by observing how the person's environment affects their health and wellness. For example, a TCM doctor is very interested in:
- What you do for a living
- How you feel emotionally
- What is going on with your body -- any aches or pains
- How you were raised
- What you eat
- The way you live your life
Needless to say, Traditional Chinese Medicine is quite the contrast from traditional Western medicine.
Benefits of Traditional Chinese Medicine
Most diseases, conditions, and symptoms can be treated by Traditional Chinese Medicine. Some of the most popular ailments to be treated with TCM include:
- Emotional issues, such as anxiety, depression and stress
- Issues with quality of sleep, or even insomnia
- Extreme tiredness, or lack of energy
- Back issues
- Migraines and headaches
- Issues with digestion
While Western medicine also addresses these common issues, as mentioned above, Traditional Chinese Medicine does so with a more holistic and natural approach -- not by taking pharmaceutical drugs or undergoing invasive medical procedures.
Types of Therapies Used in Traditional Chinese Medicine
The most common types of treatment or therapies used in TCM include:
- This is a type of heat therapy when a mixture of plants are burned on or near the skin's surface. The purpose is to warm up the body's natural flow to rid the body of disease.
- Massage can work out the toxins in the body and promote better flow.
- Cupping Therapy. Becoming popular among athletes, cupping uses small glass cups that adhere through suction to the skin. The cups seek to draw out toxins, promote relaxation in the form of massage, and ease pain and inflammation in the body.
- Probably the most commonly thought of Chinese medicine approach, acupuncture is when a series of needles are placed in various pressure points of the body.
- Gua Sha. The skin is gently scraped as a means to massage the body and promote circulation. It is often used to treat chronic pain.
How a TCM Doctor Treats Patients
Traditional Chinese Medicine doctors study the practice for many years, not unlike Western doctors. One skill TCM doctors use is listening. A TCM doctor will take a lot of time with each patient in order to truly understand every aspect of their life, since the person's environment is so instrumental in overall health and wellbeing.
While some patients and doctors are skeptical of TCM, many have found the ability to heal their ailments and improve their symptoms, all in a quest to ensure a balance of the mind, body, and spirit.