Traditional Chinese Medicine

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What is Traditional Chinese Medicine?

What is Traditional Chinese Medicine?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a medical system that has been used to diagnose, treat, and prevent illnesses for more than 2,000 years. TCM is based on a belief in yin and yang, which is defined as opposing energies, such as earth and heaven, and winter and summer. When yin and yang are in balance, you feel energized. Out of balance, however, yin and yang negatively adversely your health and well-being.

Practitioners believe there is a life force or energy, known as qi (pronounced "chee"), in every body. For yin and yang to be balanced and for health, qi must be balanced and flowing freely. When there is too little or too much qi in one of the body's energy pathways, called meridians, it causes illness.

From the University of Maryland Medical Center,

How does Traditional Chinese Medicine Work?

How Does Traditional Chinese Medicine Work?

Disease, which is an alteration in the normal flow of qi such that yin and yang are not balanced, is considered to have three causes: external or environmental factors, internal emotions, and lifestyle factors such as food. Through therapies, Traditional Chinese Medicine stimulates the body's healing mechanisms. Practices used in Traditional Chinese Medicine include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Moxibustion, burning an herb near the skin
  • Herbal medicine
  • Nutrition
  • Tui na, chinese medicine
  • Tai chi and qi gong

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the body's internal organs are thought of as complex networks. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, qi flows through organ systems, the kidneys, heart, spleen, liver, lung, gallbladder, small intestine, and large intestine, by meridians. These five systems correspond to more than individual body parts. The kidney, for example, represents the entire urinary system along with the adrenal glands, located on top of the kidneys. The heart, meanwhile, represents both the heart and the brain.

From the University of Maryland Medical Center,

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