Anna Sloan L.Ac.
How can Chinese medicine actually help me?
Updated: Aug 25, 2021
We've probably all been told how ancient Chinese medicine is- some thousands of years or so, and for those reason's alone it should be valid, right? Well, Yes and No. While the medicine has been around a long time, it has given us opportunities to find what works and what doesn't. And in the days of modern medicine, which absolutely saves lives and works modern day magic, there are some conditions that fall through the cracks. Or maybe you are given a medication for one thing, and it creates a host of new symptoms and issues you now have to deal with. These are the places where Chinese medicine can help people thrive in their everyday lives.
Chinese medicine is evidence based, and it's important that this becomes better understood. Chinese medicine has clinical efficacy on various autonomic nerve-related disorders like anxiety, circadian rhythm disorders (insomnia), cardiovascular disease, epilepsy, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and subfertility. Increasing numbers of studies demonstrate that acupuncture and herbal medicines can control autonomic nervous system functions like blood pressure, skin temperature, pulse rate, and muscle nerve activities. It is speculated that this is the central mechanism of acupuncture- that it modulates various autonomic responses which might provide the foundations for the effects of acupuncture and Chinese medicine!
My favorite part about Chinese medicine is how it is tailored to your needs. No viruses will present in the exact same way with every person, no injury will cause the same pain in every person, and the way that it presents will depend on your body constitution. Chinese medicine allows for diagnostic nuances that aren't sometimes addressed in western medicine. We allow the needles and the herbs to communicate to your body in a specific way to help aid in healing the underlying issues that may be keeping your pain or illness from resolving. We also recommend lifestyle and diet changes based on your presentation so you can resolve the issues faster and leave treatment with the skills needed to live a life full of vitality.
It's important that this medicine is integrative. Your practitioner should encourage working with your other healthcare providers. You should never feel pressured to abandon the things your doctor has prescribed or advised. Your Chinese medicine practitioner may be able to take a deeper look into your health history and provide recommendations based on evidence, and if a change needs to be made, they should present evidence and work in conjunction with your current health care team to make sure you get the best quality care available to you in a safe and effective manner.
What else can acupuncture and herbal medicine provide relief from?
- Chronic Pain
- Viral Illness
- Dermatology issues
- Menstruation Dysfunction
- Pregnancy Discomforts
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Many other things!
How to find a practitioner
Always look to see if your provider is a licensed acupuncturist or Chinese Medicine specialist (Certified by the NCCAOM). While many chiropractors and physical therapists may use needling techniques that help with tight muscles and lack of blood flow, they are not trained in the many intricacies of Chinese medicine that allow the full body picture to come together for rapid and effective healing. A licensed acupuncturist studies on average 7 years before they can become licensed to practice the medicine, and spends many thousands of hours between the classroom and gaining clinical experience before even sitting for the four board exams required to become licensed. The NCCAOM has a wonderful tool dedicated to finding licensed practitioners in your area! https://www.nccaom.org/find-a-practitioner-directory/