Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)

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How can Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) help you?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is based on diagnosing imbalances in your system. During a typical appointment, a TCM practitioner will assess your overall health by taking a health history, doing a tongue assessment, pulse assessment, and a physical exam. The exam would identify any Imbalances or qi blockages.

TCM is used to treat a variety of issues including:

  • Allergies
  • Anxiety
  • Arthritis (e.g. Rheumatoid Arthritis)
  • Back pain
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Eczema, Hives, Acne, Psoriasis, and other Skin Conditions
  • Fertility
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Insomnia
  • Menopause Symptoms
  • Obesity
  • Parkinson’s Disease (The Yu Center)
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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is, at core, the balance of body, mind, and spirit. TCM is thousands of years old and has changed little over the centuries. Its basic concept is that a vital force of life, called Qi, surges through the body. Any imbalance to Qi can cause disease and illness. This imbalance is most commonly thought to be caused by an alteration in the opposite and complementary forces that make up the Qi. These are called yin and yang.

Ancient Chinese believed that humans are microcosms of the larger surrounding universe, and are interconnected with nature and subject to its forces. Balance between health and disease is a key concept. TCM treatment seeks to restore this balance through treatment specific to the individual. 

It is believed that to regain balance, you must achieve the balance between the internal body organs and the external elements of earth, fire, water, wood, and metal.

Treatment to regain balance may involve:

  • Acupuncture.
  • Moxibustion (the burning of herbal leaves on or near the body).
  • Cupping (the use of warmed glass jars to create suction on certain points of the body).
  • Massage.
  • Herbal Remedies.
  • Movement and Concentration Exercises (such as Tai Chi or Qi Gong). (Johns Hopkins Medicine)

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) offers a perspective on the nature of illness and health that is uniquely different from, and is complementary to, Western Medicine. 

In TCM, human beings are considered to be deeply connected with all the phenomena of nature; formed from, and nourished by nature’s essential elements, influenced by its rhythms, and subject to its laws of growth and change.

Health can be defined as a harmonious relationship between one’s own internal condition and one’s external environment; there must be a balance between one’s body/mind/spirit and one’’ relationship with nature. (The College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of Newfoundland & Labrador)

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a system of medicine partly based on the idea that an energy, called qi (pronounced “chee”), flows along pathways—called meridians—in the body. In this belief, if the flow of qi along these meridians is blocked or unbalanced, illness can occur. 

In China, doctors have practiced Traditional Chinese Medicine for thousands of years, and it is continuing to gain popularity in many Western countries. Causes of qi imbalance are thought to involve:

  • External forces, such as wind, cold, or heat.
  • Internal forces, such as emotions of joy, anger, or fear.
  • Lifestyle factors, such as poor diet, too little sleep, or too much alcohol.

Another important concept in Traditional Chinese Medicine is the concept of yin and yang. In this approach, all things, including the body, are composed of opposing forces called yin and yang. Health is said to depend on the balance of these forces. Traditional Chinese Medicine focuses on maintaining the yin-yang balance to maintain health and prevent illness. Traditional Chinese Medicine doctors look at the balance of body, mind, and spirit to determine how to restore qi, the yin-yang balance, and good health.

Some people use traditional Chinese medicine to treat problems such as asthma, allergies, and infertility. Traditional Chinese medicine doctors may use several types of treatment to restore qi balance.

Traditional Chinese Medicine therapies include:

  • Acupuncture, which uses thin metal needles placed along the body’s meridians.
  • Acupressure, which uses the hands or fingers to apply direct pressure to points along the body’s meridians.
  • Chinese herbs, combinations of herbs, roots, powders, or animal substances to help restore balance in the body.
  • Cupping, which uses warm air in glass jars to create suction placed on areas of the body to help stimulate qi.
  • Diet. Yin and yang foods can help restore the yin-yang balance in the body.
  • Massage (Tui Na) on specific areas of the body or along the body’s meridians.
  • Moxibustion, which uses small amounts of heated plant fiber (moxa, or Chinese mugwort) on specific areas of the body.
  • Qi Gong, which uses movement, breathing techniques, and meditation.

Explore the Research

We believe you should have access to high-quality research to help you make informed health decisions. Below are four trusted databases you can use as tools to expand your healthcare knowledge.