Chinese medicine is a unique therapeutic system with its own physiological understandings that date back over 3000 years. This system of medicine takes a holistic point of view, incorporating interconnectedness to the natural world and how the environment influences our bodies and emotions. It studies the body as a living system, and how emotions, feelings, and qi (energy) can affect physiology. This differs from Western medicine, which tends to study nonliving systems within the body and one-size-fits-all solutions.
The ways that people eat, exercise, and live are all a part of what Chinese medicine (CM) encompasses, and what it offers.
Historically, this was the main system of medicine available to the people and therefore comprehensive tools and treatments were developed for every different disease and for each individual person. Services include acupuncture, herbal medicine, life cultivation and food therapy, cupping, moxibustion, and more.
Preventative Way of Life vs. Treating Disease
At the heart of CM are the teachings of the Tao — literally translated as “The Way”. People seek to create a way of life that lives in harmony with nature and with one’s environment. It’s rather poetic, viewing each of us as organic beings interconnected with Nature and subject to its forces. It is believed that when we remove ourselves from our natural connections, we create patterns of disharmony, which ultimately lead to disease — or dis-ease: not having common cause with Nature, our innate nature or the nature around us, resulting in discomfort or stress.
A trained Chinese Medicine practitioner is able to recognize what is causing patterns of disharmony, which can relate to lifestyle, nutrition, habits, thought processes, our environment or surroundings, and can offer practical and effective methods to making the appropriate adjustments.
There are two guiding principles:
The person, rather than the disease, must be treated. The goal is to improve physiological functioning.
Because no two people are the same, treatments are individualized and developed on a person-to-person basis.
Each person is to be viewed as a whole organism, a garden if you will, where everything is interconnected.
Each part of the whole must be considered in diagnosis and the development of a treatment.
Life cultivation, as it is referred to in CM, is a very important piece of the puzzle. It was said that one must first nurture and preserve their life, by not overtaxing the body through exhausting ones resources or damaging its function with poor choices and habits, before seeking medical treatment for diseases. However, our society tends to work in reverse. We exhaust our physical and digestive bodies, and over extend the emotions and the intellect, until we are wasted and breaking. Only then do we turn to medicine for help.
“Running water does not spoil, the door post does not rot. The Way of nurturing the body consists of never standing still nor moving for a long time, never sitting nor lying for a long time, never looking nor hearing for a long time. Avoid overeating, overdrinking, and overworking. Avoid anxiety and worrying, great anger, sorrow and grief, great fear, jumping about, too many words, and great laughter... A person who is good at preserving life constantly reduces thoughts, ideas, desires, worldly affairs, speaking, laughter, worrying, joy, happiness, anger, likes, and dislikes...”
What happens in a Chinese Medicine assessment?
Regardless of what ailment a patient may visit us for; everyone is evaluated using the same process. We do a thorough assessment with a goal of discovering core mechanisms in the body that require assistance and encouragement. You will be asked many questions about specific health concerns as well as questions about your broader well being. It is important to understand energy levels, how well you sleep, digest, eliminate, hot or cold sensations in your body, your levels of thirst, the state of your reproductive health, and so on.
By using tools such as pulse, abdominal palpation, and observation of the person’s physique, face, and tongue, the body can provide more information about its functional parts and where the attention needs to be directed. This information becomes invaluable in developing a treatment.
All of these parts help us to understand the whole working system and then how to proceed with treatment. What we observe in the body, decides the path we follow. Various methodologies we use, like herbal medicine and/or acupuncture, will be used to help restore the healthy functioning of ones physiology in this system.
What worked for the ancient Chinese, works for us now. In this modern world, it is important to remember the wholeness that Chinese Medicine has to offer. Western medicine has opened many doors for us, of course, but our western minds may have, in fact, limited what we expect from medicine. Try to let go of what you think you know about your body and embrace new ways of finding health.
In harmony with the Tao, the sky is clear and spacious, the earth is solid and full, all creatures flourish together, content with the way they are, endlessly repeating themselves, endlessly renewed.
The following is a list of commonly seen health concerns at Wild Roots:
- Reproductive and gynecological concerns
- Infertility (men and women’s), recurrent miscarriages, menstrual troubles, infections, hormonal issues
- Pre and postnatal
- Spotting, abdominal pain, threatened miscarriage, morning sickness, digestive troubles, leg cramps, back pain, high blood pressure, gestational diabetes, itching, early or delayed onset of labor, support during labor and delivery, postpartum bleeding, breast feeding, mastitis, depression and irritability, and many other signs of depletion in the postpartum years
- Hormonal and endocrine issues
- Thyroid, diabetes, adrenal fatigue
- Digestive issues and bowel disease
- Irritable bowel syndrome, Chrone's, colitis, diverticulitis, hemorrhoids, reflux, chronic bloating and indigestion, constipation, diarrhea etc.
- Cancer supportive care
- People recently diagnosed, currently undergoing cancer treatments, or those who have completed their treatments and are in recovery
- Uro-genital issues
- Bladder infections, interstitial cystitis, vaginal infections, prostate problems
- Rheumatic complaints and arthritis
- Male sexual health concerns and erectile dysfunction
- Neurological problems and pain
- Anxiety, stress, depression
- High blood pressure
- Infections of the chest, sinuses, and ears
- Skin diseases
- Common cold and flus
- (This system is very effective. Do not hesitate to call at the onset of symptoms to help support your recovery.)