What is TCM?
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a healthcare system originated in ancient China and has a history of over two thousand years. The diagnosis and treatment of TCM is influenced by ancient Chinese philosophy, culture, and science and technology, Chinese medicine uses the theory of Yin and Yang and the theory of Wu Xing to explain the mechanism of balancing the function of the body. In accordance with US National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), NIH, the representative of the US Federal Government, there is concrete evidence to prove that acupuncture is safe when performed by an experienced practitioner using sterile needles. In Canada, TCM and acupuncture are safe, regulated therapies that should be performed by a licensed practitioner. In Ontario, TCM and acupuncture are regulated by College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturist of Ontario (CTCMPAO). The licensed TCM practitioners use the by-law title "R. TCMP" and "R. Ac" simultaneously. The licensed acupuncturists use the by-law title "R. Ac" only.
Types of treatment in TCM
Chinese Herbal Medicine Chinese herbal medicine is primarily plant based (using leaves, roots, stems, flowers and seeds), but some minerals and animal products are also used. These herbs are classified by its energy characteristics and taste property, where a combination of different herbs is used to balance the yin and yang energy patterns of the body. Health in Davisville provides two types of herbal medicine dispensing: the well-prepared herbal decoction, or the loose herbal package prepared by a professional pharmacist.
Acupuncture Acupuncture is the insertion of thin, metal needles to stimulate specific points of the body that reach meridians. These stimulation points are called acupuncture points or acupoints. Traditional Chinese medicine holds that there are 365 commonly used acupuncture points on 20 meridians on the human body. The acupuncture treatment usually takes 20 to 30 minutes. The objective of acupuncture is to regulate the flow of qi throughout the body and restore health to the mind and body, thus balancing the yin and yang. The insertions of needles are manipulated either by the hand or by electrical stimulation, called electroacupuncture. TCM doctor typically uses four types of acupuncture: manual acupuncture, electroacupuncture, abdominal acupuncture, and ear point acupressure (non-invasive).
Moxibustion Moxibustion is a form of heat therapy in which mugwort (a commonly used herb) is burned on (direct moxibustion) or near the skin (indirect moxibustion). The purpose of moxibustion is to heat acupuncture points in order to stimulate the flow of qi and strengthen the blood.
Cupping Cupping is a form of therapy that involves the suction of the skin and the surface muscle layer to stretch and be drawn into a cup. Cupping is used to encourage the blood flow of the body and treat conditions such as acute or chronic pains, respiratory problems and musculoskeletal problems. In addition, studies show that cupping can help restore energy and has anti-aging effects. The research was published in Rejuvenation Research, the Official Journal of the European Society of Preventive, Regenerative and Anti-Aging Medicine (ESAAM). TCM doctor uses the dry cupping method called fire cupping. In the procedure of fire cupping, the inside of a glass cup is heated with fire, then placed onto the skin. As the air inside the cup cools, a vacuum is created causing the skin and muscle layer to rise and redden into the cup. The cups are to be left on the patient's skin for 3 to 5 minutes. After the cups are removed from the session, temporary red marks might show on the patient's skin. These marks might remain on the skin for up to 10 days. These marks are a result of bruising and minor bleeding from broken capillary blood vessels.
Gua Sha Gua sha is a technique in which a smooth-edged tool, such as Chinese soup spoon or pieces of honed jade, is pressed and stroked on a lubricated area of the body until a mark appears. Press-stroking is to be performed sequentially - line by line and in one direction - until the entire area is completed. When done correctly, Gua Sha should not be painful. The mark is a result of bruising and broken capillary blood vessels (sha). Raising sha removes abnormal qi and blood stagnation, and reduces inflammation; therefore, it provides immune protection, and improves the circulation of the body. According to Western medicine, it functions on: the nervous system to enhance human defense mechanism, and the circulative system which speeds up the circulation of blood and lymph to enhance metabolism.
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