Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) dates back to before the 21st century BC. With over thousands of years of practice and development Chinese medicine possesses a unique and integrated theory. It is a complete medicine system. More and more research of modern medicine proves that Chinese medicine has distinctive effects on most forms of ill health. There are many side effects caused by taking antibiotics, steroids, painkillers and other synthetic chemical drugs for long periods or at high dosage.
Today people are looking for an alternative way to get fit and healthy. More and more people in Western countries have used and prefer Chinese medicine. It is estimated that a quarter of the world’s population currently use Chinese medicine all around the world. In the United Kingdom Chinese medicine has become the most popular complementary medicine. Almost half the population, 47% of those surveyed, have used, or would consider the use, of complementary medicine.
The fundamental principle of Chinese medicine is that the human body is considered as a whole system. The balance of Yin and Yang (life forces) in a human body is the basic condition of human health and thus the imbalance of Yin and Yang by any means will result in ill health. The purpose of Chinese medicine treatments is to analyze all symptoms and experiences of patients whilst taking into account age, sex, life style, physical and emotional traits as well as other aspects of an individual. An overall picture of the patient is then set up. The medical treatment is to rebalance Yin and Yang in the human body rather than to just treat symptoms. The medical materials of Chinese medicine are natural plants and minerals. Compared to chemical synthetic drugs Chinese medicine is safer and has fewer side effects. Nowadays a well-trained practitioner not only uses the traditional way of diagnosis but is also able to use other approaches integrated with conventional western medicine. Chinese medicine has three basic forms of treatment – Acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Therapy and Acupressure (therapeutic massage). Chinese medicine treats both acute and chronic conditions and is suitable for all age groups from young babies to the elderly.
Conventional Western medicine mainly relies on synthetic drugs and surgery. In contrast, TCM uses natural methods. Herbs used in TCM, such as roots, leaves, stems and seeds, are all 100% natural. Acupuncture involves the insertion of tiny, disposable needles into specific acupuncture points and meridians, which stimulate the body's own healing process.
Chinese medicine treats the cause of the disorder, and Western medicine treats the symptom of the disorder. For example, two people may have the same symptoms of eczema but the cause of the complaint may be completely different; one patient may have an imbalance of his or her liver, the other may have an imbalance of the spleen. A Western doctor might prescribe the same medicine for the ailment because the symptom is the same. However, the Chinese doctor would treat the underlying cause of eczema and, in this case, one patient would be treated for a liver imbalance and the other for a spleen imbalance.