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Archive for the ‘Traditional Chinese Medicine’ Category

Getting Massage To Relieve Back Pain

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Back massage to relieve back pain is the manipulation of the soft tissues of the body using appendages such as the hands. Back massage can energize and heal and eliminate pain leaving you with a greater sense of well being.

There are many benefits massage can give your body. Here are some of them:

Stress Relief

Massage can reduce stress in your everyday life and cure tension associated with headaches.

Pain Relief

Massage can help soothe muscles aches. It can alleviate chronic back pain, migraines, headaches, arthritis, and rheumatism and help relieve stiffness and tension.

Increases Circulation

Massage boosts blood circulation through application

Better Sleep

Regular Massage therapy can alleviate mental stress and help you get a good night’s sleep.

Lowers blood pressure

Massage can reduce blood pressure in people with high blood pressure.

Immune System

Massage enhances your urinary and digestive and systems for better overall immunity.

Flexibility

Massage alleviates muscular stiffness and tension and improves your range of motion and the flexibility of your joints.

Emotional

Massage promotes positive emotions leaving with a good sense of well being.

Fitness

Massage aids you through preventing and healing injury.

Body Awareness

Massage promotes body and mind awareness and connects you with yourself.

Getting massage on a daily basis to help gain the best benefits from this gentle therapy. In the West, there are many Chinese parlors that offer reasonably prices for massage. You can also choose several different massage options and styles for comparison. Shiatsu massage is one form of massage that is especially useful to relieve back pain relief.

Feel the difference and try a massage today.

Dr. Jignesh Panchal is an acupuncturist in Winter Park, FL who customizes treatment plans using Chinese medicine, Ayurvedic medicine or Ozone Therapy.

Written by Valerie

November 6th, 2018 at 12:51 pm

Neigong’s Health Benefits And Generating Powers

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For the most fervent practitioners, while the process of embodying ever-deeper levels of neigong and the internal arts practice can be a lifetime quest, at each step of their progress, the health benefits connected to its practice significantly increase. Several students prefer form over content, but it is the internals that supercharge the forms of bagua, tai chi, and qigong, which make all the health benefits and generating powers possible.

The practice of Neigong begins with physical movements that stretch the soft tissues of the body (ligaments, tendons, fascia, and muscles) via several progressive and systematic procedures. The second level is all about knowing how to control the fluids of the body that, with constant practice, can enable practitioners to eventually gain access to the energy that fuels their body. The intent of the mind in the third level can be applied to move chi at will – this is where the fun really begins.

When we exercise the body on three different levels—chi, fluids, flesh/nerves— it enables us to free up both longstanding and generalized stress, which at each layer is bounded by tension. This power to control all three on demand and at will is the equivalent of using a key to unlock the mechanisms of the body that enable deep relaxation. This is because:

o Fluids (e.g., cerebrospinal, synovial, interstitial, lymph, and blood); are moved by energy and the body is moved by fluids.
o The fluids and nerves are where energy moves the strongest.
o The body operates by fluids and nerves.

Together, the three phases produce a proper synergy and feedback loop that can give you access to ever-deeper levels of your being since basic techniques of neigong are designed to open and relax the body, allowing you to let go. Each development stage may take several years or even decades to adequately develop. There’s no way to only understand and skip just one stage on a superficial basis in order to advance to the next more complex stage with any amount of success. The ability one attains with each and every level will be contained within and set the stage for the next. Therefore, one can either totally unravel or multiply the outcomes that can be achieved at the more advanced and deeper stage. The same holds true for all students.

Practitioners can attain four important goals on a well-balanced diet of form and content:

o Understand simple to complex formwork or choreography.
o Build certain threads of essential neigong
o Combine formwork and neigong in more intricate patterns and at even higher phases.
o From the outset, improve the possibility of experiencing health and power-generating benefits.

There are there are two main streams that are best separately cultivated and together to gain mindful control over bodily functions in the early stages of neigong:

1. Developing and contacting the pulse (close and open).
2. Manipulating and contacting the soft tissues;

When working with the soft tissues, there are five apparent levels to consider, whereby one is an advancement from and broadens on the depth offered in the preceding level.

For working with the soft tissues the five levels are:

1. Stretching and bending from the inside out and the outside in;
2. Stretching along the yin and yang body surfaces, and wrapping the torso’s soft tissues;
3. Rotating or turning the torso, legs, and arms;
4. Spiraling the soft tissues;
5. Twirling the soft tissues;

As with all the processes of neigong, a hierarchy of training dictates the learning process. This is meant to manipulate the soft tissues for power generation and health. For moving the soft tissues there contains a couple of groups of components or areas of development.

The two components, with their respective sequence of learning, are:

1. (Basic) Stretching and Bending; (Intermediate) Wrapping/ Lengthening
2. (Basic) Rotating/ Turning; (Intermediate) Twisting; (Advanced) Spiraling

One must begin with stretching¬-bending and rotating since these methods:

o Form the groundwork for the more advanced work.
o Enable you to gain control over your soft tissues that then allows you to progress to the next level.
o Begin the process of body consciousness.

Attaining the above is just some of the ways you must take to put your mind literally inside your body to keep alive and stay in touch with the soft tissues of your body. Regardless of what internal art(s) one practices, manifestation of these vital neigong is an essential vital part of one’s foundation. Consciously getting control over your soft tissues with the intent of your mind is just an initial step that can turn into the ability of cultivating and manipulating your chi.

Jamie Catlett is an acupuncturist in Jacksonville, FL and the founder of Jacksonville Acupuncture Clinic.

Written by Valerie

November 6th, 2018 at 12:50 pm

Chinese Medicine And The Need To Have A Balanced Diet

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Studies involving specific herbal remedies and herbs by Chinese healers were meant to restore balance preserve health or restore the state of health of an ill person once again. The healer may utilize other means of treatment including massage therapy, acupressure or acupuncture, Chi Kung, exercise, as well as nutrition and diet, which will be the focus of this article. According to Chinese medicine, unless an emergency arose, for most illnesses, there was no need for surgery. As is done in the West, the Chinese did not actually have a profound knowledge of anatomy, but instead used the energy channels or meridians within the body. From modern physics we now know that our physical body is not solid at all and in fact, is nothing but a swirling and oscillating mass of energy, as we might have observed through our senses. The meridians move bodily substances in a perfectly, unobstructed, and continuous flow from one organ system to another. However, only by living an emotionally satisfied and balanced life, performing the right exercise, and eating the proper foods and drinks, can this be so. Barring any misfortunes, we can then be almost guaranteed of a long life and one free of disease.

Unfortunately, most of us don’t follow a healthy diet, do not do regular exercise, and may not comprehend what being healthy really means. We may follow lifestyles that have been shown in the western medical sense to be damaging to our health (such as overindulging in sensual activities; drinking alcohol, and smoking. Yes our sex life can be a significant factor on our health, mentally, physically as well as longevity-wise. After passing the age of 40, a person needs to be concerned about his or her sexual health and for men, this is especially true.

While we may all belong to the same family of humans, each of us is different and unique in itself. The differences may be familial, religious, cultural, geographical, cultural, religious, familial, and even genetic. For instance, we may have different blood types like B, O, AB, and A, so the constitution of our blood may vary from person to person. Studies have shown that the drinks and foods we ingest can impact us biologically and medically, particularly when it comes to our blood type. For instance, studies have shown that blood A types do not live longer than 60 years of age. A types have a high risk of heart disease and cancer that kill off these people at a very early age. The culprit has shown to be a proclivity for eating foods rich in saturated fats. Should A type blood people be advised to eat a diet with lots of vegetables? This suggestion is certainly worth considering. This is actually the job of a diet therapist and not your family doctor. While some Western medical physicians have been educating themselves in the field of nutrition in the recent past, many of them are not really trained in this discipline. An excellent source for counseling and advice would be a nutritionist trained in providing holistic therapies.

When it comes to real nutrition, blood typing is just the tip of the iceberg. As stated previously, each person needs to be evaluated for their nutritional requirements. Herbs and food are the main sources for well being and health and they need to be customized based on the needs of the individual. For people suffering from chronic illnesses, this is extremely vital and likewise essentially important for people who may seem to be healthy but have not been properly examined for their nutritional requirements. In its approach to health, Chinese Herbal Medicine is truly a holistic therapy. It considers the person as a whole as well all the body’s organ systems, including the mind and heart. Balance is important and you are not in balance if you are ill. The wholeness of your being is fully addressed in Traditional Chinese Medicine.

 

Balance Within – Integrative Acupuncture
16200 Ventura Blvd
Encino, CA 91436
(818) 478-9401
http://www.balancewithinyou.com/

Written by Valerie

October 30th, 2018 at 6:27 am

Traditional Chinese Medicine Treatments For Prostatitis

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At time of birth, the prostate is the size of a pea but it grows to the size of a walnut during young adulthood. During their mid- to late 40s, most men experience the next phase of prostate growth. The cells near the center of their prostate starts to reproduce much rapidly at this time. This rapid growth usually tends to obstruct the urethra and partially block the flow of urine. The medical term for this disorder is BPH or benign prostatic hyperplasia. The swelling of the prostate can also be attributed to bacterial infection, a condition medically termed as chronic or acute or bacterial prostatitis. Another form of chronic prostatitis is one that is not caused by bacteria has no known cause and actually occurs more commonly than its counterpart.

The enlargement of the prostate impacts about 50 percent of men around the age of 60 and most men (90 percent) around the ages 70 and 80. The absence or occurrence of the prostate gland enlargement is usually not associated with the rise of prostate cancer.

Conventional remedies are usually based on the patient’s symptoms and signs and may involve drugs, surgery or non-operative therapies such as nutritional supplements, herbs, and acupuncture.

Symptoms & Signs

The enlargement of the prostate can vary in degree of severity from man to man, and more often than not the swelling is not always serious. Around 50 percent of men with prostate swelling experience symptoms and signs that can turn bothersome or obvious enough for them to warrant treatment. These symptoms and signs can include:

  • Chills and Fever (infection)
  • Pain during ejaculation
  • Lower stomach pain
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Hematuria or blood in the urine
  • Inability to empty the bladder completely
  • Urgent desire to urinate
  • Nocturia or increased number of urination at night
  • Frequent desire to urinate
  • Dribbling at the end of urination
  • Starting and stopping again while urinating
  • Difficulty initiating urination
  • Weak urine stream

Traditional Chinese Medicine

According to Fort Lauderdale Traditional Chinese Medicine the cause of prostate swelling is either a buildup of Heat and Dampness in the lower jiao or lower part of the torso, or cold infiltrating the Liver meridian or Liver energy channel, usually accompanied by Deficient Kidney as an underlying cause. This health issue gives rise to all the aforementioned urinary symptoms. Laser acupuncture, moxibustion, and traditional acupuncture have led to improvements in the restoration of the function of the urinary system. On the other hand, Chinese herbal medicine has demonstrated the ability to cure the underlying reasons of prostate swelling. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy used together is an essential choice in winning the battle versus prostate swelling. This was proven in one specific study when electro-acupuncture was shown to help cases of chronic prostatitis that did not respond to conventional treatments.

Acupuncture modalities (laser, electro, traditional) as well as heat therapy (moxibustion) can be utilized once a week except when significant pain is felt. In this case, two to three sessions each week for one to three weeks may be recommended. Chinese herbal medicine can be taken in the form of daily drops, powders, pills, and tea. Western herbal medicine and certain nutritional supplements can also be a good plan of treatment. Diet may also be monitored from a traditional energetic perspective in order to remove anything that tends to exacerbate the prostate problem.

Chronic non-bacterial prostatitis

According to recent medical studies, there is no known cause for chronic non-bacterial prostatitis. The bad thing about this is that this problem is a more common occurrence than chronic and acute bacterial prostatitis, its infectious analogues.

Symptoms of chronic non-bacterial prostatitis include an unfinished feeling after urination, polyuria (frequent urination), low back pain, and CPPS or chronic pelvic pain syndrome or discomfort and pain in the pelvic area. Usually there is no redness, no history of UTI (urinary tract infection), and patients won’t find relief from their symptoms with antibiotics.

A patient with chronic non-bacterial prostatitis may also experience a feeling of ‘coldness’ (instead of “heat,” which can then be connected to infectious bacterial prostatitis). More often than not, the patient can also experience emotional disorders such as erectile dysfunction and depression which thus ought to be diagnosed and addressed properly.

Clinical Research and Studies

There are patients who experience relief from chronic non-bacterial prostatitis by taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAID’s, but since these drugs tend to suppress the immune system, they cannot be used in the long term.

According to the Merck manual, two other great ways to experience relief from symptoms is by getting a prostate massage and taking hot sitz baths.

The benefits of acupuncture, phytotherapy (bee pollen, quercetin) and alternative therapies have demonstrated the effectiveness of these therapies. Acupuncture treatment proved that chronic prostatitis has a neuromuscular component to it. This is further validated by one study done by Nickel and Chen in Ontario Canada at the King Street Medical Arts Centre in Mississauga. In this study, acupuncture led to the successful relief of symptoms in men suffering from chronic pelvic pain syndrome/chronic prostatitis.

A laser acupuncture study performed in Hangzhou, China by Shen, Liu, Gao, and Chen revealed encouraging results.

Recently, some herbal supplements have garnered acknowledgement in the scientific community; to help urinary flow beta-sitosterol, for pain quercetin and saw palmetto, and for urinary symptoms, pygeum.

Decades of empirical proof also shows promise to men seeking the aid of a reputable practitioner of Chinese herbal medicine.

Written by Valerie

October 30th, 2018 at 6:16 am

Chinese Nutritional Therapy And TCM

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The acknowledgement of individuality is one of the things most liked about traditional Chinese medicine or TCM. This also stretches to the realm of Chinese nutritional therapy. Here, in Chinese nutritional therapy, there is no “one size fits all” or diets or herbal regimens. Each is customized to the needs of the person, and it’s known that each individual needs can vary widely.

A balanced diet, from the perspective of the Chinese, is quite different from that in the West. A balanced diet for the Chinese is one that integrates the five 5 tastes – salty, sweet, bitter, sour, and spicy. Herbs and foods that have a specific taste or flavor are likely to possess specific properties. For instance, bitter foods and herbs tend to be Cold and drying making them ideal for addressing Damp Heat problems, but not recommended for individuals who are too Dry and/or too Cold. Most bitter foods and herbs have antibiotic-like qualities while Salty foods and herbs are more inclined to moisten and warm. They therefore can be used to treat people suffering from Dryness and Cold, but are contraindicated for people who are Damp and Hot.

There is also such a thing as a bland flavor that goes with the five basic flavors. Bland foods and herbs tend to possess qualities that help drain Dampness. Some experts make a distinction between astringent and sour, clumping both these flavors under sour. Foods and herbs that have a sour taste tend to be moistening and possess heating energy. Astringent foods and herbs tend to be drying and cooling.

There are certain herbs and foods that possess more than one taste. The Wu Wei Shi herb, for example, is highly valued because it possesses all the five tastes. Actually, its name literally translates to Five Flavor Seed. (The scientific name for Wu Wei Shi is schizandra or Fructus Schizandrae.)

A balanced diet, according to the Chinese, is one that contains all the five tastes. However, the proportionality of those flavors/tastes tends to differ based on the season of the year and the needs of the person. A person suffering from Yang deficiency requires a higher ratio of foods that have Yang energy compared to other individuals. These Yang energy foods can furnish Yang energy to a yang deficient individual and aids him or her in obtaining balance. A person who has a Yin Deficiency problem will, on the other hand, require a larger ratio of Yin energy foods. Someone suffering from Dampness is required to go easy on herbs and foods that have sour, salty, and/or sweet flavors as they tend to be moistening. If you have problems with Dampness, it’s not necessary to consume a huge amount of herbs and foods that have moistening properties that tend to exacerbate the Dampness. These flavors and foods are recommended for some individuals who have problems related to Dryness. (There are exclusions). Each diet is thoroughly customized for the person. It’s also important to remember if the person is too Cold or too Hot. Despite the fact that all three flavors have a tendency to moisten, sweet is likely to be cooling while sour and salty tend to be heating. Sour has a more heating property than salty; therefore, one needs to avoid sour in instances of Damp Heat.

Foods that have bitter, spicy, and astringent properties can be excellent for individuals suffering from excessive Dampness but only good for people with excessive Dryness. One should also consider the thermal energy of food. Foods with cooling properties include astringent herbs and foods. Bitter herbs tend to be even more cooling than the astringent herbs and foods that tend to be too much heating.

This article shows show how a significant part of TCM involves the balancing of opposites. To balance deficient Yang, one needs to eat foods replete with Yang energy. Since winter is the most Yin time of the seasons, eating foods rich in Yang foods is appropriate. During summer, the most Yang time of the season, eating Yin rich foods is then recommended. Sometimes, however, it’s a good idea to be in harmony with the season. Therefore, during winter, eat Yin foods and during summer, eat Yang foods. Traditional Chinese medicine is custom made based on the needs of the person.

Generally speaking, meats are Yang and vegetables, Yin. Also, the manner in which food is prepared substantially influences the quantity of Yang or Yin energy of the food. Yang tends to increase when food is fried, and yin tends to increase when food is steamed. Therefore, veggies that are stir-fried have more Yang energy in them than veggies that were steamed. If you suffer from Yang Deficiency, it is a good idea to stir-fry your vegetables. On the other hand, if you are deficient in Yin energy, it’s a good idea to less of stir-fried veggies and lots of steamed veggies. Food served warm and cooked tends to be more warming compared to cold and raw food. Celery cooked in a stir-fried dish served warm, for instance, has greater warming quality and possesses more Yang energy than raw celery served in a cold salad.

Some flavors also have a certain association with some of the Organ systems in the body. The salty taste, for instance, has a close relationship with the bladder and Kidneys. Some foods are sometimes salted to help derive the qualities of the food to the Kidneys. It’s widely believed that a person suffering from Kidney imbalances can feel better after just eating a little salt and drinking herbal teas that have tonifying properties to the Kidneys. In general, the sour flavor has a close association with the Gall Bladder and Liver. (You should be careful as this may lead to Damp Heat affecting the Liver or gall stones). Bitter has a relationship with the Small Intestine and Heart, sweet, for the Stomach and Spleen and spicy for the Large Intestine and Lungs.

In Chinese nutritional therapy, there is absolutely no such thing as “one size fits all” or forbidden foods. From time to time, sugar may be even added in an herbal remedy because it is needed by the person. (In America, this rarely happens, but in other countries, sugar is deemed as medicine for some people. But the use of sugar in the US is so overdone that it is classified as a “poison”).

There are no “one size fits all” diet therapies even in the West. People have this erroneous belief that we’re all the same – like transposable components on a factory line. Salt, for instance, is deemed harmful for a lot of people and can increase blood pressure in many of them. Most of these people are strictly on a low sodium diet. However, a low sodium diet can create havoc to people suffering from NMH or Neurally Mediated Hypotension or adrenal insufficiency. Most of us require lots of water to rehydrate ourselves or to survive; for others, however such as people suffering from epilepsy, drinking too much water can be dangerous. There are people who need to lots of fat in their diet more than others. This is especially true with children in particular, who may develop growth and health problems when impetuous parents restrict the eating of too much fat in their child’s diets. Because of an assault to our systems or as a result of genetics, some of us have more than an average need for taking certain minerals or vitamins. A deficiency of iodine in our body can result in goiter, but excessive amounts of iodine can bring about instances of hyperthyroidism. You can basically exacerbate an existing illness if you consume the wrong foods at the wrong time.

Certain preventive measures are required when selecting these foods as they tend to be eaten on a regular basis over the long term which can have a long lasting and profound effect on the functions of the body. If a specific herbal remedy is used over a long period of time, the same precautions apply. This means there’s prudence in following a diverse diet not only based on the Western perspective of range of nutrients and/or allergies, but also from the perspective of traditional Chinese medicine).

Salty food should be avoided in deficient blood as they tend to dry the Blood.

Pungent foods disperse Chi and in deficient Chi syndrome should be avoided.

Sweet foods settle on the muscles and too much of it can lead to muscle weakness.

Bitter foods settle on the bones and to avoid diseases of the bone, too much of it should be avoided.

Sour foods settle on the nerves and can disturb the Liver, therefore, if a person suffers from chronic pain, it should be sparingly used.

Salty foods settle on the Kidneys, if you suffer from a diseased Liver, you need to avoid pungent foods, salty foods go to the Kidneys, pungent foods go to the Lungs, sweet foods goes to the Spleen, bitter foods go to the Heart, and sour foods go to the Liver. According to Chinese nutritional therapy, do not eat pungent foods if the Liver is diseased, you should not eat bitter foods if the Lung is diseased, if you have a diseased Kidney, you should not eat sweet foods, you should not eat sour foods if your Kidney is diseased, if you have diseased Heart, refrain from eating pungent foods.

In instances of Liver disease, you may be wondering about limiting or avoiding the consumption of spicy foods, limiting salty foods in cases of Heart disease when salt flavor has an affiliation with the Kidneys, limiting sour foods for Spleen disorders, when the Liver is affiliated with the sour taste.

These constraints all deal with the five elements theory of the Victor-Vanquished rule. This rule essentially deals with the Organ systems that have opposite affiliations with each other. In a Victor-Vanquished relationship, one gets weakened while the other gets stronger. For instance, if there is excessive amount of energy in the Liver, it can invade the Spleen. This disharmony is known as Liver attacking the Spleen (this means a very strong Liver causes it to attack the Spleen, which is very weak). In this instance, the attack of the Spleen by the Liver causes damage that can be painful and can wreak havoc to the digestion. If sour foods (which are affiliated with the Liver) are eaten by someone with a weak Spleen, it’s weakening the Spleen and energizing the Liver even more because of the inverse effect of the Victor-Vanquished relationship between the Spleen and the Liver. There are occasions in which the Element that usually is the Vanquished will reverse the tables on the Element that’s typically known as the Victor. This is known as “Insulting”. In this instance Spleen (Earth) Insulting Liver (Wood).

It’s important to remember that the first line of defense in health matters is Chinese nutritional therapy in . Occasionally, before the medicinal herbs are given or before the herbs can work properly, the individual will need to straighten out his/her diet.

Christina Prieto is an Orlando acupuncturist, a certified Yoga instructor and the founder of Harmony Wellness center in central Florida.

Written by Valerie

October 30th, 2018 at 5:52 am

Different Forms Of Asian Bodywork Therapy

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Most people are unaware of the benefits that a practitioner of Oriental Medicine in Jacksonville or Asian bodywork can offer. If you’re unsure of the different styles of Asian bodywork or are unsure of where to begin, you have not yet tried this type of therapy.

When talking about Asian bodywork, one of the first things that come to mind is that Asian people are the only one’s offering these techniques. Asian bodywork is actually practiced and performed by every ethnicity these days. Those healers have gone through rigorous training and certification and are practicing these techniques in several rural areas, suburbs, and even in homes. Simply ask for your therapist’s credentials if you’re not sure about them. Elite practitioners and therapists of Asian bodywork have certification provided by the AOBTA or the American Organization for Bodywork Therapies of Asia.

Asian style therapists utilize several different modalities including Swedish massage and other traditional techniques. In their massage, several Western approaches do not avail of the use of ‘energy’ primarily because it can be difficult to think about it since they actually cannot be seen. However, most of us are familiar about the central nervous system. In Asian style bodywork, the therapist is performing the massage in such a way that restores balance to the person making him not too drowsy after a massage session, even in Swedish massage.

Asian bodywork therapists also use various unique modalities. According to ancient documents, the Chinese have been using massage for thousands of years ago, before anyone else. This implies that ALL forms of massages originated in China in one way or another. Tui Na is the number one type of massage practiced in China today. It is a medical version of massage with less ‘fluff’ and more therapeutic value and is also used to provide orthopedic massage, and physical therapy and for treatment of sports injuries and ailments. It uses a unique set of hand techniques that’s way beyond strokes and entails very little disrobing and little-to-no oils. Tui Na uses deep tissue techniques, sports therapies, traction, stretching, and acupressure.

Acupressure is basically massaging the acupoints of the body. It is very similar to Shiatsu, but traditionally is performed on the floor.

Reflexology utilizes various parts of the body including the ear, hand, and foot to address those ‘reflex zones’ that will lead to the treatment of the entire body. Foot reflexology is the most popular type of reflexology. Most foot reflexology treatments are done by a skilled therapist who took a single class on the subject and performs a simple foot rub on the client. Real foot reflexology does not use foot baths, crèmes, or lotions. Instead it uses very special finger and thumb techniques to work the foot in a very specific way and direction. Talk to your therapist if you plan to get a real foot reflexology therapy.

I urge you to look for an Asian bodywork therapist in your area and ask for a consultation or try one of their special treatments. Other healing therapies include Shiatsu, Thai Massage, Lomi Lomi, and more.

Written by Valerie

September 25th, 2018 at 2:14 pm

Integrating Western Medicine And Eastern Medicine Is The Best Approach To Healing

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TCM or Traditional Chinese Medicine in Vancouver, which includes herbology, Chinese physical therapy (Tui Na), and acupuncture have been practiced for thousands of years to help heal the human body. Unfortunately, it tends to be sidelined because it is not commercialized and most people are unfamiliar to it. This article will strive to let you know more a little about this ancient healing system.

Origins

The aforementioned components of TCM do not heal the body per se but instead aids in healing. We say this because these components set off the self-healing processes of the body. The remedies found in herbology, acupuncture, and Tui na balance the body which promotes healing. They do not address the symptoms of a disease. They actually treat its underlying cause.

In TCM, there exists and energy within the human body called Chi or Qi. But the theory of a universal flow of energy is really not novel. Physicists in the West have come to the conclusion that all matter is energy and all energy is matter. Chi circulates inside the body, and the body is in balance when Chi flows smoothly. We become ill when the Chi slows down or speeds up due to a blockage or other factors that tend to affect its flow. Think of it this way…

Chi can be thought of as a free-flowing river, the current keeps the water clean and well-oxygenated while the rocks help filter the water. Imagine now that a tree branch or trunk has fallen into the river and creates an obstruction like a partial dam. Water builds up in an area, and the flow begins to slow down. The stagnating waters cause algae to grow in the water and on the rocks. Detritus and debris get snared in the dammed up part of the river resulting in bacterial growth that eventually flows downriver.

External

The underlying cause of your pain can be sometimes a chronic physical condition or an injury. Tui Na herbology, and acupuncture are as equally effective in resolving orthopedic trauma as Western medicine. Many kung fu practitioners and athletes swear by these healing modalities.

Injuries can be due to stagnation and blockages, especially with regards to circulation. We could use an herbal ointment to heal a sprained ankle. The ointment contains herbs that have their own unique healing properties. It may contain for instance, turmeric that can help treat inflammation and boost circulation. Less inflammation means less pain. Thus, turmeric can be often found many ointments to relieve pain.

Tui Na practically is therapeutic massage. This type of treatment also helps restore balance in the body by encouraging the flow of chi through the energy channels or meridians (where chi flows), muscles, and joints.

Internal

Being examined by a practitioner of TCM is different from the kind of examination one gets from a Western medicine doctor. In TCM examination, unless you’re referring about your pulse (which mirrors circulation), there are no blood tests. Your pulse, symptoms, and appearance (the physical appearance of your skin, tongue, etc.) are the things observed by a practitioner.

Both herbology and acupuncture are used to address stagnation and chi blockages that can be the underlying reason for any number of pain or ailments, and can be used together to resolve one or multiple health issues. Acupuncture needles are inserted into the point(s) of obstruction while the herbs are given to encourage the movement of chi and circulation.

Herbs can come in the form of ointment, tea, or pills, and if your TCM practitioner is also an herbalist, he exactly knows how to combine them. There is no Tylenol in a Chinese pharmacy. It only sells herbs – lots of them. Actually the first pharmaceutical drugs used in Western medicine were herbs. Sadly however, especially with regard to “Big Pharma,” it’s apparent that Western medicine seems to be too much concerned with treating symptoms alone and providing people with a temporary fix for their illness.

The Best of Both Worlds

Healing can be maximized by integrating Western medicine and Eastern medicine. Both aspects of these two healing systems should be incorporated to attain balance in our practice. In various instances, a lifetime on medication is not the answer, nor surgery. Combining TCM with the best practices Western science and medicine has to offer (including nutritional therapy) gives you the tools necessary to attain wellness and health.

Written by Valerie

September 25th, 2018 at 1:48 pm

Gua Sha Can Be Used As Treatment For A Myriad Of Illnesses And Ailments

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One traditional Chinese medicine technique in Austin that uses pressured strokes on oiled skin with various instruments such as jade stone, water buffalo horn, or a coin is Gua Sha therapy. It is a natural safe form of treatment and has a myriad benefits to health. It is rapidly becoming popular in the US and Europe.

In Chinese medicine, Gua Sha means to literally scrape away illness. It is a type of folk medicine that has been practiced in Southeast and Northeast Asia for thousands of years.

As a traditional Chinese therapy, Gua Sha demonstrates its therapeutic effects in the following ways:

1. Helps eliminate toxins in the blood
2. Activate the collaterals and relaxes tendons and muscles
3. Strengthens the immunity of the individual
4. Removes blood stasis and enhances the flow of blood

After a session of Gua Sha, the back of the patient has several extravasation of blood from the peripheral capillaries that result in subdermal blemishing which usually takes two to four days to disappear. Since Gua Sha is known to be safe and cause zero side effects, it can be used in a person’s daily life. It can be used by almost any individual as treatment for a myriad of illnesses and ailments. However, it is contraindicated people with the following conditions and diseases:

1. People who are tired, full, or very hungry.
2. Women who are pregnant should not have gua sha therapy on their belly.
3. People with swelling in their body.
4. People suffering from hypohepatia, renal insufficiency, or severe cardiovascular diseases.
5. People with mental disorders.
6. People suffering from trauma, fracture, or acute lumbar sprain.
7. People with bleeding disorders.
8. People suffering from advanced leukemia, anemia, or diabetes.
9. People suffering from infectious diseases.

People suffering from one of the above diseases or from one of the above conditions should get permission from their doctors in order to avoid unnecessary problems.

Written by Valerie

April 17th, 2018 at 4:55 am

Posted in Traditional Chinese Medicine

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The Various Benefits Of Gua Sha Therapy

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The benefits of gua sha therapy are numerous and it especially works against any chronic disorder that involves inflammation or pain.

Gua sha promotes smooth flow of blood to the organs, connective tissues, and muscles; enhances range of movement; and relieves pain and spasms. One session of this therapy often heads off an oncoming cold and can be an effective way to quiet a persistent cough. Studies have revealed that gua sha results in a four-fold boost in microcirculation, stimulates the immune system, and treats inflammation. It also increases the activity of an enzyme that helps lessen inflammation of the internal organ: the heme-oxygenase-1. The upregulation of HO-1 explains in part the use of gua sha for internal organ conditions such as liver disease cough, hepatitis and asthma.

Does gua sha leave bruises or abrasions in the body?

While the site of treatment in gua sha will look like road rash after the therapy, surface of the skin is totally intact and there is no bleeding related to this technique. Gua sha will leave skin discoloration that looks like a bruise but is not. Bruising happens when a sheer force or blow damages the capillaries and leads to bleeding in the tissue. In gua sha, however, blood cells are pressed or extravasated via the capillary walls without the surrounding tissues and the capillaries being damaged. The site of treatment will usually feel a bit tender after treatment but all in all, the result is rapid alleviation of pain and an increase in range of movement.

What happens during and after the therapy?

During the procedure, the therapist utilizes a smooth-edged instrument to stroke the skin repeatedly. Gua means “press stroke” or “to rub” while Sha is a word that denotes the congestion of blood in the surface tissue in parts of the body where the patient experiences pain and stiffness; sha can also refer to the tiny red spots that are elevated during the procedure. “Petechiae” is the medical term for the red spots that occurs during the therapy.

Those petechiae are the blood cells that have been pressed outside of the tiny blood vessels (capillaries) as the therapist strokes the skin time and time again. The process of re-absorption within the body immediately starts and it is the this process, combined with a significant rise in local circulation, that leads to the pain-relieving, immune-boosting, and anti-inflammatory benefits that gua sha provides.

Why is the color of sha important and how quick does it fade?

The associated petechiae from gua sha range in color from bright to dark red, and from blue to almost black. When the therapy is performed at the site of an acute or relatively new problem, the color of the petechiae usually is bright red. The reason for this is that the blood stuck beneath the skin in the connective tissue arises during only the procedure. In contrast, the ensuing petechiae when the therapy is done on the treatment site that experiences chronic injury or pain are usually bluish or even black in color. This is due to the blood that has been stagnant for a considerable amount of time.

Also important is how rapid the petechiae dissipate following the procedure. Among young healthy individuals with strong circulatory systems, petechiae vanish quite rapidly. If the gua sha is performed on children in the morning, the petechiae usually vanish by the end of the day. On the other hand, among older people suffering from chronic pain or with slow or weak circulation, the petechiae may need almost a week to completely vanish.

Individuals with stagnant circulation may find that their skin takes longer than usual to return to its normal appearance.

It’s important to remember the following instructions days after your gua sha treatment:

1. For three days following treatment, drink lots of water.

2. As the site of treatment becomes more flexible and dramatically less painful, be informed that if the site is overburdened by strenuous activity days following treatment, it will be prone to re-injury.

3. Wear a scarf over the treated site during windy or cool weather. Use a shirt to cover the treated site at night.

4. Avoid exposing the treated site to extreme temperature, direct sunlight, or drafts till the appearance of your skin goes back to normal.

Dr. Guoen Wang is a licensed acupuncturist, herbalist and doctor of Chinese medicine in Austin Texas.

Written by Valerie

April 17th, 2018 at 4:53 am

Gua Sha Treats A Wide Range Of Health Issues Including Chronic And Acute Pain

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An ancient form of East Asian healing technique, Gua Sha is used to treat a wide range of health issues including chronic and acute pain. This technique uses a smooth instrument to scrape the skin in order to generate a therapeutic and temporary rash. The rash that develops is believed to relieve pain and other issues associated with stagnation of blood flow or “congestion” of blood.

According to Gua Sha healers, chronic and acute inflammation and pain are due to sluggish movement of vital energy or Chi and blood of a patient. They believe that when the skin in the affected area of the body is scraped, the area develops an elevated rash that treats pain and other symptoms of illnesses by forcing stagnant fluids and blood to move. When the fluids and blood start to move, they transport metabolic waste towards muscles and surface tissues, and boost microcirculation in the site of treatment.

The rashes from the Gua Sha therapy consist of tiny blood extravasations just deep to the skin surface (Sha). In Western medicine, these tiny blood leakages are called “ecchymoses” or “petechiae” and are an apparent sign that static blood has been restored to a healthy flow. The rashes normally clear around two to four days.

Some of the health problems that can be treated with Gua Sha therapy include musculoskeletal problems such as spasm, strain, and fibromyalgia and respiratory conditions such as emphysema, bronchitis, asthma, and the common cold. In the management of pain, Gua Sha is known to alleviate chronic and acute pain that may be attributed to these and other conditions.

Procedure

During a session of Gua Sha therapy, the practitioner or healer presses or palpates the skin of the patient in order to locate tender knots and points in the substratal musculature. The healer also searches for parts of the body that display delayed capillary refill or blanching. Then based on the findings, the healer lubricates the site of treatment with oil and then using a smooth instrument scrapes the treatment site with broad strokes until the telltale rash develops. Some of the instruments typically used to create the rash include slices of animal horn, coins, or soup spoons; and the treatment sites usually treated are the stomach, chest, limbs, buttocks, shoulders, neck, and back.

The duration and color of the rash is believed to aid the Gua sha healer to diagnose and customize a plan of treatment to specifically address the needs of the patient. For instance, a light-colored Sha can indicate a Chinese medicine diagnosis known as “blood deficiency,” while dark-colored Sha may indicate stagnant blood that has been going on for an extended period of time.

Gua Sha Benefits

A growing body of research provides clinical evidence that acupuncture, cupping, gua sha, massage, and other reflex therapies aid in reducing the symptoms of pain by influencing the function of the spinal cord and pain-sensing neurons called nociceptors. In addition, these comforting social therapies may be good for patients suffering from pain by promoting relaxation.

A controlled clinical randomized open trial revealed that Gua Sha generated positive short-term effects on functional status and pain in patients suffering from chronic pain in the neck. The trial recruited 48 patients who were randomly treated with local thermal heat pads or with Gua Sha therapy. The effects of the treatment were monitored for seven days. Compared to the control group, the group given gua sha therapy experienced significant improvement in the severity of their neck pain. The patients in the gua sha group also experienced reduced scores on the NDI (Neck Disability Index (NDI), relief of pain, and a higher quality of life. The researchers reported that the Gua Sha treatment was apparently well tolerated and totally safe.

In another similar controlled randomized study, the effects of gua sha therapy on the pressure pain thresholds and pain ratings in patients suffering from chronic low back pain and chronic neck pain was measured. It was discovered that the patients treated with Gua Sha therapy reported decreases in these two pain scales.

Risks

Neither the current national standards nor the literature adequately address Gua Sha therapy safety standards. It is widely believed, however, that Gua Sha should not be performed on patients suffering from bleeding disorders or taking blood thinners. Gua Sha should also not be performed in parts of the body where there are open sores burns and other superficial skin lesions, in areas where there is bruising, and in areas such as the spine where there are overlying bony prominences. It should also not be performed on the genitalia.

Results

The response of the patient to Gua Sha therapy guides the healer into creating a customized plan of treatment. The duration and color of the rash, for instance, can provide information that can be used in planning future treatment.

Moreover, the personal experience of the patient may determine whether Gua Sha is a proper treatment for their pain. Those likely to benefit from additional sessions are patients who report relaxation and pain relief.

Blue Mountain Acupuncture
2200 Melrose St Suite 9
Walla Walla, WA 99362
Phone: (509) 876-4597
https://www.bluemountainacupuncture.com

Written by Valerie

April 10th, 2018 at 4:50 am