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Traditional Chinese Medicine dates back to 3rd Century and includes a range of alternative or complementary practices to help the body; mind and spirit find wholeness through ultimate health. Practices such as herbal medicine, acupuncture, dietary therapy, Tui na and Shiatsu massage are affiliated with Traditional Chinese Medicine (abbreviated as TCM).

How does Chinese Medicine work?

TCM is deeply rooted in restoring imbalances or blockages within the energy of the human body otherwise known as Qi or vital energy. To make a diagnoses TCM uses three basic principles to determine a problem and a possible treatment. First, a practitioner will analyze the relationship between yin and yang. Yin and yang are the two opposing but complementary forces that surround us and govern this world and the human body, for example man/woman, hot/cold, day/night. Secondly, the practitioner will determine how the ailment corresponds to the five Chinese elements, which are earth, wood, fire, water and metal. The TCM teaches that the internal organs and body systems are connected with these elements. Lastly, it is the goal to identify where in the body's systems lay the deficiency.

If you are familiar with contemporary medicine the ways of TCM might seem a little primitive and they are. Although they are somewhat primitive practices they have been used to cure diseases, restore wholeness and eliminate pain for thousands of years. Having a track record of success should allow you to relax as you train your mind to view the human body from a new perspective. The beauty of TCM is it restores wholeness. Just as the anatomical structure of the body is a testament of connectivity, each bone connected perfectly, surrounded by muscle, highways of veins, arteries, and nerves and covered by skin enabling movement, so is the body connected to the world in which it resides. The air that we breathe is vital for our existence, the heat from the sun, water for hydration these all are equally connected to our body as the bones within our skin. It is the goal of TCM to aim for total connectivity within the human body and with its environment.

What can Traditional Chinese Medicine Treat?

If you were to pose this question to a TCM practitioner they would probably answer it with the question "what can't it treat?" With all the dynamics of TCM it is hard to single out a list of treatments. As with most medical practitioners there are common symptoms that TCM practitioners treat on a frequent basis. Just as a pediatrician might frequently treat ear infections and fevers a TCM practitioner might treat pain control and headaches.

If you are considering visiting a TCM practitioner think of him as a regular doctor who uses more primitive, natural and gentle practices to heal the body.

How to become a Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner/Therapist?

As TCM practices are increasing in popularity as our society begins to hungers for a natural way to achieve increased health there are many schools that offer programs. As an up coming student you need to determine what area of TCM interests you the most interests you. Perhaps you are intrigued by Acupuncture or maybe the healing power of herbs astounds you. If you cannot make up your mind there are programs that integrate several TCM practices. These programs are more intense and take longer to complete but they will provide a broad base with flexible career opportunities.



By Worldwidehealth Editor
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