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Understanding Chinese Medicine and why you should try it

Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM for short is an umbrella name for all the different Chinese therapies which include Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs, Moxibustion, Cupping, Tuina (Chinese Massage), Medical Qi Qong and Tai Chi. When we talk about treatment using Chinese Medicine we are referring to one or two or more of the above therapies. If we are talking about someone receiving Chinese Medicine we are not meaning that they have just been given Chinese Herbs, but that they may have received one or more of the above therapies including or maybe not including herbs.

Traditional acupuncture is based on ancient Chinese theories of the flow of Qi (pronounced “chee”) and Xue (blood) through distinct meridians or pathways that cover the body somewhat like the nerves and blood vessels do. There is nothing more fundamental to Chinese medicine than understanding the concept of Qi. Qi has variously been translated as “vital energy” or “life force”; however, it is impossible to capture the concept fully in one English word or phrase. Qi has best been described by Ted Kaptchuk a well-respected Western practitioner of Chinese medicine as “matter on the verge of becoming energy, or energy at the point of materialising.”

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is the insertion of fine sterile needles into the body at specific points shown to be effective in the treatment of specific health problems and diseases. These points are chosen according to the individual needs of the patient and which symptoms and sign that they present with at the clinic. The essence of Chinese medicine lies in the skill of the practitioner in modifying and fine tuning the treatment in order to match the characteristics and variations in a patient’s disharmony. Acupuncture points lie on the network of meridians and cover most of the body. Recently electromagnetic research has confirmed their location. In a healthy state energy or Qi flows freely through these meridians, but when a person has a disease or illness this energy flow becomes blocked or interrupted creating disharmony plus the resulting symptoms and signs of a particular disease. Acupuncture and herbs allow Qi to flow to areas where it is Deficient and away from where it is in Excess. In this way, they regulate and restore the harmonious energetic balance of the body thus eliminating the disease.

China

When I was studying in China there were great innovations taking place regarding researching new methods and ways to apply acupuncture, one of the things I frequently saw whilst working in the hospitals was the acupuncture doctors injecting the blood moving herb Dan Shen directly into the acupuncture points, this seemed to work really well in all sorts of problems but especially with stiffness and frozen shoulder. Dan Shen is a great herb, it’s mostly used in circulation problems, and it invigorates blood, removes stagnant blood from bruised tissue, opens the vessels, regulates the Qi in the blood and stops pain it’s also used to lower cholesterol. There are research centers of excellence in China entirely devoted to finding new methods and experimenting with Chinese medicine. Even though acupuncture is an ancient art it is still being developed and advanced.

Western Medicine

Advocates of Western Medicine and some Western doctors often denigrate Chinese Medicine and argue that it is not “scientific.” The illusion that has been fostered in the 21th century Western world is that anything ”scientific” or “newly discovered” must be superior to everything that came before it, that the only knowledge of value is knowledge derived during the past 50 years. In reality, medicine that has little effect and doesn’t improve a patients symptoms will disappear from the market place in a very short time simply because it doesn’t work. If a treatment is ineffective, it will not be continued. Of the 5000 new drugs unleashed on the public every year 4000 of them have to be withdrawn after 5 years because of adverse side effects. Any Chinese herbal treatment or healing system that has existed for several thousand years is effective and has proven its effectiveness in the experience of thousands – if not millions- of patients and doctors. This is a far tougher standard than the testing of a few hundred people or rats in a laboratory. Western Medicine or Allopathic Medicine as it is sometimes called is still in its infancy compared to Traditional Chinese Medicine. Western Medicine as we know it came into being in Germany at the end of the 19th Century, a little more than a hundred years ago. While there has been much progress and tremendous innovation, Western Medicine is still a young and evolving science; Traditional Chinese Medicine on the other hand is based on thousands of years of experience and study.

Acupuncture a Great Treatment for Stress

Stress and anxiety are now very common ailments in today’s overly fast moving world. There is a very large gap between what’s expected from you from society and what you really want to do and be. In today’s failing monetary system we have financial pressures, the like that we have never seen before in the past , and the various TV media, whose only interest is in making money and pushing political agendas , no matter what the cost, unfortunately dictate and push today’s fast way of life where everything is a commodity and everything is disposable. The continual bombardment of our senses to make money and look after number one and to succeed at all costs creates an inner conflict planting the seeds of discontentment; this mind-set is what leads to the rapidly rising suicide rates all over the world.  Panic and depression set in whenever a person cannot measure up to a perceived sense of worth and achievement. This illusion of happiness which a lot of people cannot achieve but continue to strive for does not come from within ourselves but rather is dictated to us by society through television and advertising, they want us all to look the same, its called fashion and behave in a certain way, as a form of control. If it were true that wealth could solve all the world’s problems then there surely is enough in the world to make this happen and there certainly would not be any stress at all. So the real truth about yourself should come within yourself and not from the box on the wall or some magazine, this is why Acupuncture, Yoga ,Tai Chi, Meditation,  Qi Qong, and Herbal Medicine would all be good systems to get into in order to get in touch with and find the real inner self, where true happiness resides.

Chinese Medicine and Stress

So what can we do? The answer lies in the age-old wisdom that is “Chinese medicine”. When stress strikes, the body’s energy flow what the Chinese call “chi” (Qi) is impeded. Acupuncture is based on the concept of maintaining balance and harmony within the body by facilitating the flow of life energy in it. When chi/Qi (life energy) inside the body becomes stagnant and congested all kinds of mental and physical illness will follow. In order to restore chi distribution, fine painless needles are inserted into acupoints along the meridians (energy pathways) of the body. According to the science of acupuncture there are more than 350 acupoints on the meridians of the body. Stress and depression is one of the most common factors involved in blocking this energy flow leading to most diseases including cancer. Its always a good policy to have regular acupuncture treatments in order to keep you healthy and stress free.

Restoring the Balance in the Mind

Constant stress causes the disruption of the body’s energy flow causing all sorts of disorders like high blood pressure, migraine headaches, neck and shoulder pain, palpitations, insomnia, ibs, thyroid problems, etc etc, Acupuncture and Chinese herbs can and will restore this energy flow taking away the dreaded down feelings associated with the stress and depression. Prolonged chronic stress and depression unchecked for many years could lead to more serious diseases like cancer and heart disease and chronic insomnia. Much back and shoulder pain and stiffness can also be coming from stress because if the bodys energy is not flowing at its optimal then joint pain and stifness can be the result. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs can provide a safe and effective tool for stress and depression as well as all associated aches and pains like headaches. The Chinese herbal formula Xiao Yao Wan is an excellent formula for relieving stress when combined with regular acupuncture treatments. It will not, of course, change the circumstances of a person’s life but it will induce a deep and profound relaxation which gets to the very core of their being producing a very strong feeling of well-being lifting the panic and stressful feelings. The practitioner can help restore balance and thus protect health by identifying each individual’s unique energy profile to see where the weak spots are and where support is needed to restore balance. Acupuncture for stress can and will open a window of opportunity. As the heavy feelings of stress are relieved, a person feels more confidence in his/her ability to cope with the unpleasant aspects of his/her life situation and should then maybe be in a place to make the necessary changes. It’s very hard to make lifestyle changes while in the throes of a stressful downward spiral. Acupuncture is a very important and effective first step on the road to recovering from stress. But above all else acupuncture is a tried and tested natural form of medicine, free from the ghastly side effects associated with Western medicine and drugs.

Eczema

The underlying theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is that the body should be in a perfect state of physical and emotional balance to reach harmony with the outside world. When the balance is upset, disease will result. In the case of a y

oung eczema patient it was obvious after an examination of his pulse and the colour and texture of his tongue, that the cause of his problem was excessive dampness in his stomach causing indigestion. In addition, the drugs he had been taking to control his condition had, over time, contributed to the accumulation of excess of toxins in his body. Following time-honoured TCM principles I use two key methods to restore balance: acupuncture and herbal therapy. Acupuncture involves the insertion of sterilized fine steel needles at specific points in the body in order to stimulate the function of the internal organs and to direct healing energy called Qi (pronounced Chi) to a particular area of the body.
Itching

Three body meridians are essential to the treatment of eczema – the lung, spleen and liver meridians. These three organs have direct influence on the skin. A person should also avoid drinking alcohol and orange juice because these foods can induce heat in the body causing the skin to heat up thus aggravating the itch. I would advise eating more cooling foods as well like pears, grepafruit and watermelons The choice of acu-points in the spleen meridian is of primary importance for eczema patients and it takes a qualified practitioner to identify them correctly. In the hands of an expert the procedure isn’t painful and most patients gain immediate relief from itching. The TCM treatment of eczema aims for more than temporary relief. The ultimate goal is 100% cure.
Herbs and Acupuncture

In the Chinese medical system there are some 10,000 herbs that are used for medicinal purposes. About 1,000 of these are used in daily practice. The selection of herbs is highly sophisticated and it takes knowledge and experience to make the optimal choice for each particular patient. Rarely does one prescribe the same herbs for different patients. This is true even if patients suffer the same disease. In my own practice I have found the Chinese herbal formula Jin Ju Di Dan Wan to be very effective in the treatment of eczema due to heat toxins in the blood.
Blood plays a defensive role by delivering nutrients and removing metabolic wastes, toxins and pathogens from the body. In the case of chronic eczema, I have observed that some patient’s blood is deficient and the immune function is weak. I can detect this by observing the colour of the patients tongue, Chinese doctors have a saying that “the tongue never lies” and indeed Western doctors years ago used to look at the tongue as well for signs of ill health, but his was long before the drug companies and other so called modern methods took over their methods and their medicine. Eczema is a skin problem that is not that difficult to resolve. Herbs with properties of cleansing and enriching are safe, effective and economical. When taken as prescribed along with acupuncture they can be highly effective. A healthy lifestyle and diet is of utmost importance to prevent re-occurrence of eczema.

Allergens

Anything that aggravates the symptoms should be avoided. This includes food allergens; although food allergies are a very individual matter, common irritants may include wheat, corn, dairy, soy, peanuts, eggs, beef, and lamb. As well, patients should avoid skin irritants such as wool and lanolin. Exposure to environmental triggers can also worsen symptoms, as can exposure to water, changes in temperature, sweat and stress. Dry skin often makes the condition worse. When washing or bathing, patients should keep water contact as brief as possible and use no soap The herbal wash I prescribe for eczema called Liu Wu Xi Yi is a very effective shampoo and shower gel for the body and is a combination of Chinese herbs designed to treat itch and clear away heat toxins from the skin. It is also very important to apply Huang Qin Gao which is a high quality Chinese ointment to treat skin disorders like eczema and psoriasis. Mainstream medicine generally depends on drugs for the treatment of eczema, this approach only temporally alleviates the symptoms, and it ignores the underlying causes of the disease. In addition, the drugs often have very negative side effects and could also maybe be addictive as well.

Peptic Ulcers

(r) Peptic Ulcers

Peptic ulcers are open sores or erosions in the lining of either the duodenum these are called duodenal ulcers or in the stomach (gastric ulcers). The duodenum is the first part of the small intestine just after

it leaves the stomach. Ulcers are caused by stress, which leads to Helicobacter pylori infection. When the stomach’s natural protections from the effects of digestive juices (including acid and pepsin [an enzyme that helps breakdown protein]) stop working or the acid production is too overwhelming for these protective defences to work properly, these acids can burn the stomach lining and you can get an ulcer. There are a few different ways this happens.

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori),a bacterial organism, are responsible for most ulcers. This organism weakens the protective coating of the stomach and duodenum and allows the digestive juices to irritate the sensitive lining below.

Anti Inflammatory Medicine

The ongoing use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is the second most common cause of ulcers. It has been known for some people to even have part of their stomachs removed as a result of the over use of anti-inflammatory drugs. Some of the most common symptoms of ulcers are-abdominal pain with a burning or gnawing sensation, pain 2 to 3 hours after eating, pain that is often aggravated by an empty stomach; night time pain is common, heartburn indigestion (dyspepsia), belching, nausea, vomiting, poor appetite and weight loss. Excessive alcohol intake can also overheat the liver causing over acidity to the stomach lining plus eating over acidic soda breads and confectionaries and all the usual junk foods or too much fried foods.

A Natural Remedy

Try and start every single day with a glass of lemon juice in lukewarm water preferably mineral water not fluoride infested tap water! Seemingly acidic fruits such as lemons and limes are acidic in their basic state, but once metabolised by the body have an alkalising effect on the stomach. The high alkaline mineral content of these lemons and limes means that once consumed and metabolised they increase the alkalinity of the cells of the body. A lot of alkaline elements are found in the lemon. Vitamin C is found in abundant amounts in the fresh juice of lemons. If left exposed to the air for long periods of time, most of the valuable vitamin C in the juice is lost – for this reason, fresh juice should be preferred. Important nutrients such as the element potassium and the vitamin B1 are also found in high amounts in the lemon.

Make sure you REALLY wash the lemons if they are not organic because the pesticides and chemicals could leach out of the rind and into your water if they are left soaking for too long. Given the choice organic lemons is the way to go, or just peel the non organic ones.

Chinese Medicine

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine stomach ulcers are classified as stomach heat, how does this heat occur? Well as I stated earlier the root cause of all stomach upsets is usually stress related.

In Chinese medicine stress creates heat in the liver; this excessive heat then rises upwards and invades the stomach causing heartburn and various other digestive upsets. Acupuncture points to eradicate this liver heat are used in conjunction with cooling and calming herbs. In my own clinics I use two very important acupuncture points on the feet in the treatment of all ulcers; these points are specifically indicated to drain excessive heat from the stomach and they also calm the heat coming up from the liver, I once cured a patient with these points who had ulcers for over 15 years, he had tried all western drugs available at the time for his condition but none worked, after about 12 acupuncture and herbal treatments all his pain and symptoms disappeared and then he had a further endoscopy (an endoscopy, is when a narrow, flexible tube with a fibre-optic light and camera at the end, is put down the throat and into the stomach to have a look for the presence of ulcers) to confirm if the ulcers had healed or not.
To the surprise of the surgeon the test confirmed that the ulcers had indeed been healed.

Prostate Problems

(r) Prostate Problems

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)—also known as benign prostatic hypertrophy—is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland that occurs in almost all men as they age. The enlargement is usually harmless, but it often results in problems urinating. About half of all men over 50 experience some symptoms usually-
• a hesitant, interrupted, weak stream
• urgency and leaking or dribbling
• more frequent urination, especially at night

These conditions, if left untreated, could lead to more serious conditions such as prostate cancer, urine retention, urinary tract infections, bladder or kidney damage, bladder stones, and incontinence. BPH according to Chinese Medicine is categorized into diseases relating to urination. Historically there was no mention of an enlarged prostate. The ancient Chinese had no way of knowing that a man’s prostate was enlarged, but they were aware of the symptoms it caused. These symptoms of frequent night time urination, painful urination, and difficult urination were observed and thus categorized as disease categories, which are used today to diagnose and treat BPH.
Men’s Health

Throughout Chinese history men have dominated society. As this is an unfortunate reality it has also lead Chinese Medicine to be able to focus its medical knowledge on treating men’s health and longevity. As far back as the Yellow Emperor’s reign many classical texts were devoted to increasing men’s health. Although centuries have past since the Yellow Emperor began inquiring about health and wellness, men today still look for various ways to stay healthy.

Testing PSA

Just being tested for prostate cancer is no guarantee that you have it, there is now a lot of controversary about the effectiveness of the PSA test for prostate cancer. Richard Ablin of the University of Arizona said the screening tool he discovered four decades ago now costs too much and is ineffective.

One in eight men screened for prostate cancer will test positive when they do not have the disease, a major European trial has shown.

A positive result can mean undergoing invasive tests such as biopsy as well as potentially unnecessary treatment.

Nourishing Foods

Some foods that nourish and increase prostate health are tomato products, which contain bioactive lycopene, a carotenoid that has been shown to decrease prostate cancer risk in numerous studies. Good sources of bioactive lycopene are cooked tomatoes (not raw) tomato juice, tomato sauce and watermelon. The prostate-friendly carotenoid, lutein comes from green, leafy vegetables like spinach and kale, as well as from egg yolks. A multivitamin containing lutein is also a good source. Pumpkin seeds are also very beneficial to the prostate but never eat them raw they must be dry roasted on a frying pan until they become golden brown.. Saw palmetto a Native American herb is highly recommended in the treatment of BPH. Saw palmetto is a herb that has been shown in clinical studies to have an important role in maintaining a healthy prostate. At least three rigorous clinical trials have confirmed Saw Palmetto’s ability to remedy urinary difficulties. In one comparative trial, it proved equal to the prescription drug Proscar as a source of symptomatic relief. Selenium has also been shown to reduce the incidence of prostate cancer in subjects taking 200 micrograms of selenium per day for 5 years.

Chinese Herbs

The Chinese herbal formula Qian Lie Kang Pian is an excellent formula for treating enlargement of the prostate. It is also used as a healthcare herb for anti-aging and anti-tiredness.

According to Chinese medicine the kidneys are the focus of treatment as it has a close connection with urinary function. According to Chinese Medicine the kidneys govern the opening and closing. This function corresponds to urinary incontinence as well as premature ejaculation. Both of these functions depend upon the kidneys strength and control to govern these functions properly. If this ability is weakened someone might experience frequent urination, dribbling, or incontinence. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can improve the Qi (energy) and blood of kidney, clean up the urination, and relieve the pain. The successful rate of treating BPH in early stage by Chinese herbal medicine and Acupuncture is very high. Men over 50 should have regular acupuncture treatments to prevent prostate problems occurring in the first place.

Hayfever

Every year I get very bad hay fever what does Chinese medicine have to offer for this problem?

This is now the best time of the year to have a preventative treatment for hay fever.
When it comes to allergies and asthma, I beli

eve that Chinese medicine provides excellent preventive and remedial therapies. Chinese medicine helps relieve the acute attacks. But even more importantly, it can identify the root cause of such allergic responses and, based on that Chinese diagnosis, suggest ways to prevent attacks from occurring in the future. This is the real benefit of Chinese medicine – lifetime freedom from runny nose, itchy eyes, and gasping for breath. The solution is in your hands. Even better, Chinese medicine is free from side effects. I believe that Chinese medicine can alleviate a lot of needless suffering. Although the side effects of western drugs are less than they used to be, many patients do not want to stay on drugs for a long period of time. Happily, Chinese Medicine provides a time-tested alternative to Western drugs when it comes to the treatment of hay fever and other allergies. Because Although other factors, such as exercise and stress play a part in many people’s hay fever, modification of one’s diet is usually the cornerstone of the Chinese medical treatment plan. Happily, acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine make such dietary changes easier to implement.
Some of the best herbal remedies used in conjunction with Acupuncture is the herbal formula Bi Yan Pian and Yin Chiao Chieh Tu Pian there are also many others all depending on the symptoms and signs.

A good treatment plan would be to treat the hay fever during an attack, but better still would be the strategy of preventative treatment usually carried out several months before the hay fever season, acupuncture points and herbs would be chosen to strengthen the immune system and treatment would be carried out right up to the days when the pollen count would be at its strongest, if the patient did then contract hay fever symptoms they would only be very mild and be of short duration, then points and herbs would be chosen to treat the symptoms as they occur. This same treatment strategy would then be continued the following year and the symptoms would become less and less until the patient was completely cured.

Don’t Forget To Remember

I read in a magazine that acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy are very good for memory loss, what do you think?

Many older people worry about becoming more forgetful. They think forgetfulness is the first sign of Alzheimer’s

disease. In the past, memory loss and confusion were considered a normal part of aging. However, scientists now know that most people remain both alert and able as they age, although it may take them longer to remember things.

A lot of people experience memory lapses. Some memory problems are serious, and others are not. People who have serious changes in their memory, personality, and behaviour may suffer from a form of brain disease called dementia.

Dementia seriously affects a person’s ability to carry out daily activities. Alzheimer’s disease is one of many types of dementia. The term dementia describes a group of symptoms that are caused by changes in brain function. Dementia symptoms may include asking the same questions repeatedly; becoming lost in familiar places; being unable to follow directions; getting disoriented about time, people, and places; and neglecting personal safety, hygiene, and nutrition. People with dementia lose their abilities at different rates. Dementia is caused by many conditions. Some conditions that cause dementia can be reversed, and others cannot. Further, many different medical conditions may cause symptoms that seems like Alzheimer’s disease, but is not. Some of these medical conditions may be treatable. Reversible conditions can be caused by a high fever, dehydration, vitamin deficiency and poor nutrition, bad reactions to medicines, problems with the thyroid gland, or a minor head injury.

In my own practice and in Chinese medical diagnosis I see poor memory as a symptom of an underlying pattern of disharmony in Chinese medicine known as Kidney Yin Deficiency. This pattern is very commonly seen in practice every day. Kidney Yin Deficiency pattern does not mean that the person diagnosed with this pattern has something wrong with his kidney function. When we talk about this according to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) we are referring to the kidney energy (qi or chi), this type of energy related to the kidney is a very subtle and intrinsic kind of energy and enables the TCM practitioner to observe subtle changes in the kidney qi/chi (energy) and helps the practitioner by treating these various symptoms and signs early to maybe avert more serious problems with the kidney further down the line in a persons life. The main symptoms of this pattern are dry mouth and throat, especially at night, scanty urination, night sweats thirst, dizziness malar flush, sensation of heat in palms and soles, chest heat flushes in the afternoon or evening, ringing in the ears, chronic low back soreness or weakness, desire to lie down and sleep, hair falls out easily, toothache, declining muscle mass, thin body, hot palms and soles, premature ejaculation and nocturnal emissions, constipation and the one we are interested in forgetfulness. A person does not necessarily have to have all the above symptoms to constitute a pattern diagnosis of Kidney Yin Deficiency. Once this pattern is diagnosed the practitioner, according to the individuals differentiating symptoms chooses the herbs and prescription of acupuncture points most suited to this person’s recovery.

“Clear your Throat (Thyroid) Free your Mind”

What is hyper/hypothyroidism and can Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal medicine help?

The thyroid gland is located on the front part of the neck below the thyroid cartilage (Adam’s apple). The gland produces thyroid hormones, whic

h regulate body metabolism. Thyroid hormones are important in regulating body energy, the body’s use of other hormones and vitamins, and the growth and maturation of body tissues. Hyperthyroidism is commonly associated with weight loss and insomnia and Hypothyroidism with weight gain and constipation but there are lots more other symptoms and signs. Women are about four times more likely than men to suffer thyroid disorders. Of these two, hypothyroidism is the most common. Grave’s disease is the most common hyperthyroid condition; in severe cases it is treated by removal of thyroid tissue either through surgery or via irradiation from an iodine isotope-this rapidly binds to the thyroid, and thus causes maximum destruction of tissues at this site. As a result, patients often experience only partial relief of the symptoms and those who suffer from hyperthyroidism often have to deal with hypothyroid conditions following medical destruction of the thyroid gland. It is also difficult to regulate the level of thyroid hormones through the use of drugs. Chinese herbs and Acupuncture provide better results than using drugs or surgery. The continued use of surgical thyroidectomy (removal of thyroid gland) and iodine-irradiation of the thyroid gland in patients should be deemed a last resort rather than the standard front line method of therapy. In China acupuncture and herbal therapy would be first used and only as a last resort would surgery and drugs be considered. From an energetic point of view the throat area is where we swallow our reality this is where we express our true feelings from our heart up and out through our voice. When we repress anger, rage our just repress our true heart felt feelings or views we block the meridians or energy channels in the throat, This repression over a long period of time causes a blockage of energy flow in the throat leading to various throat disorders from minor septic throat or a feeling of a lump in the throat or finding it hard to swallow, to goitre or in sever cases thyroid problems. We can generally repress our true feeling about life or relationships for fear of being ridiculed or of upsetting someone; it’s a fact that women suffer more with throat disorders because in society women are more repressed than men. Acupuncture is a great way of opening up the blocked energy in the thyroid gland, but it also creates an inner awareness in a persons mental/emotional matrix of where they may need to make some real changes in their life/relationships to facilitate expressing themselves in a more productive way so that energy never gets blocked again in the throat. So take a deep breath close your eyes and when thinking about your throat problem the old saying, “I need to clear my throat to that person” should come to mind.

The Acupuncture Treatment of Asthma

The Acupuncture Treatment of Asthma

     

Asthma is characterized by wheezing attacks with shortness of breath, which are usually worse at night

Sometimes there is a dry cough. The onset of attack is sudden and is followed by tightness of the chest. Acupuncture can have a remarkable effect in stopping an acute asthma attack and treatment in between attacks can get to the root cause, which is usually a deficiency of the lungs and kidney. Many patients experience immediate relief after an acupuncture treatment, feeling that the airway blockage was simply removed. Stimulation of acupuncture points can relieve both physical and emotional stress, possibly because they trigger the release of neurotransmitters in the brain. The patient can therefore experience both a physical release from his bronchial constriction, and also an emotional or psychological release from the fear of constriction and suffocation. Acupuncture is well documented in successfully treating asthma and isnt it great that we have this 5,000 year old natural healing method other wise people would just have to rely on drugs. People should do their own research into the natural healing methods available today rather then make Western medicine their first choice when it comes to healing their body. Healing the body naturally using the tried and tested techniques acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine should be the preferred method of choice when it comes to your health especially if you want a treatment devoid of the nasty side effects associated with taking Western drugs as a medicine.

Mind Medicine

Energetically and psychologically asthma can sometimes be due to a constrictive or fearful experience at birth when taking our first breath. Asthma is sometimes called the “silent scream” the desire to enter into life is followed by contraction and fear of doing so. Shallow breathing is a way of protecting ourselves from having to deal with reality. The asthmatic person can be quite dependent on a parent or spouse, always needing another person’s validation or approval. Asthma may indicate something we need to express or get off our chest but we have not yet developed the courage or means to do so. The taking in of a deep breath is saying yes to life and moving forward becoming independent. Just as our lungs expand and contract, so they represent our ability to expand share and enter into life, or if we choose the opposite to contract, isolate and retreat from life. So the way we think, feel and view life can make the difference between sickness and health. As a supplement to acupuncture exercises like Tai Chi, Qi Qong  and Yoga are excellent for opening up the bodies energy channels and expanding the chest through proper breathing and body movement.

Caesarean Birth causes Asthma

Research has shown that babies born having  the umbilical cord severed prematurely have a higher incidence of allergic asthma in later life due to the fact that prematurely severing the umbilical cord interrupts the vital flow of hormones and immune cells from the placenta to the offspring and the excretion of waste products from the baby to the placenta, there is an interesting connection here with the traditional Chinese use of placenta extract injection into certain acupuncture points to treat allergic asthma. Those born by Caesarean section also have a higher incidence of asthma due to the fact that the very last development of the lungs and kidneys takes place in the birth canal which is denied for obvious reasons to those born Caesarean. Hospitals nowadays are all too quick use Csesarean section as a convenience rather than as a necessity.

Course of Treatment

The treatment of allergic asthma will take two to three months to produce good lasting results. Both Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs are very effective alone or in combination. If children can be treated fairly early after the development of the disease, the course of treatment will be much shorter. If the patient is on inhalers such as Ventolin it is not necessary to stop them, as the need to use them will automatically decrease as the Acupuncture/Herbal treatment progresses. Indeed most acupuncturists use the decrease in use of the inhalers as a benchmark to the effectiveness of the acupuncture treatments. Eventually the patient should be able to completely get off the inhalers once the course of treatment is completed. It is much better though if the patient can reduce oral steroids very gradually as soon as possible as they have many side-effects, the main one being that of inducing a deficiency of the Kidney energy in the long run. As allergic asthma is based on a deficiency of the Kidney’s Defensive-Qi system (immune system), oral steroids, although affording relief in the short run, can only make it worse in the long run. Acupuncture and natural medicine has been treating this disorder for centuries successfully. Western medicine only uses the quick fix approach to asthma, although ok in the short term, a successful treatment modality like acupuncture should be sought out in order to find a long term solution to your problem.

Kim- Dip.Ac. Lic.Ac. C.Ac. China MQP is a registered licensed practitioner of Chinese Medicine. Treatments are VHi,  LAYA healthcare (formally Quinn), Hibernian Health (Vivas) and HSF Healthplan approved.

E mail  kimacupuncture@hotmail.com or write to the Natural Health Centre, Millfield, Buncrana, Tel. 074/9362606, From North 00353749362606 or to the The Traditional Chinese Medical Practice, 5 Academy Court, Oliver Plunkett Rd., Letterkenny, Tel. 0863981882, from North 00353863981882. Visit the Website www.naturalhealthireland.com