What to expect on your first visit.
The initial consultation and treatment can take up to 80 minutes. The practitioner will ask plenty of questions, gathering vital information relating to your condition, perform the treatment, and answer any questions that you may have. Subsequent consultations are generally up to 40 minutes.
During your first consultation, your TCM practitioner will make thorough enquiries about your presenting signs and symptoms. Broader questions will also be asked about your general health, lifestyle, eating and sleeping habits, among other things. Your pulse will be taken at several positions on each wrist, the colour and shape of your tongue will be inspected, and your overall appearance and demeanor will be taken into consideration. This information is analysed and used to determine the pattern of disharmony in your body’s landscape, allowing your practitioner to formulate an appropriate treatment strategy unique to each individual.
After a differential diagnosis, acupuncture and/or herbal medicine will be prescribed, which is used to restore healthy bodily functions and return your body to a natural state of balance. Other techniques may also be used, which all have the purpose of improving your underlying disharmony, leading to long term sustainable health.
Here are some of the things that Chinese Medicine treatment may help with:
Positive mental health is an important aspect of our daily lives. When our mind and spirit are functioning well, so too will our bodies. Stress seems to be a part of our modern lifestyle, and some people may have a harder time dealing with it than others. Chinese medicine treatment may help you to manage stress and fatigue more effectively. Studies have shown that acupuncture can increase endorphin and dopamine levels within the brain, important chemicals which make us feel happy. It is a common side-effect of acupuncture to feel relaxed and calm after treatment. Acupuncture may also be able to assist with depression and anxiety related disorders, specifically relating to underlying chronic pain.
Pain is a common ailment experienced by many people, such as a simple headache or a chronic migraine. Chinese medicine may be used to help manage pain that is related to many acute and chronic diseases. Research indicates that stimulation of certain acupuncture points can release serotonin and internal opiates, which can act to relieve pain and induce analgesia. Additionally, acupuncture has been found to reduce inflammation and swelling in damaged tissue. Electro-acupuncture involves attaching small electrodes to acupuncture needles which enhance its therapeutic effects. Moxibustion and cupping may also be used in the treatment of persistent chronic pain.
Our environment plays in a big factor in our health. Living in overly cold, hot, damp or humid conditions may give rise to a variety of health conditions. Symptoms of a common cold can be tricky to treat with over the counter medications, and may only give mild relief, or prove to be ineffective. Similarly, the treatment of seasonal allergic rhinits (hay-fever), can also be complex to treat effectively with conventional medications. A combination of acupuncture, moxibustion and herbal medicine may be used to strengthen the constitution, giving your body a fighting chance to ward off impending infections, whilst helping to improve your immune system. Cupping therapy is also great for a range of respiratory conditions.
Healthy skin is a reflection of your internal health. It is also the first line of defence from the outside world, and is often susceptible to damage. Diseases of the skin respond well to Chinese medicine treatment, particularly with herbal medication. Granule formulas, creams, and washes may be used for various dermatological conditions. Typically, skin problems are hard to cure effectively using conventional medication such as topical creams and ointment. TCM can be used to help regulate your body’s imbalance and to remove the source of the disease. Additionally, lifestyle and diet advice will be given so that the condition does not return.
Acupuncture and herbal medicine have been used extensively for gynaecological disorders. In Chinese Medicine, most of these conditions relate to irregularities of Blood and Qi in the meridians. Timely treatment may be able to alleviate pain and discomfort associated with the menstrual cycle and help to prevent them from reoccurring. Many health practitioners may recommend acupuncture as an adjunct treatment that may assist with IVF treatment. There is continuing research about how acupuncture can assist with the effectiveness of IVF treatment and you should consult your treating practitioner/s about how acupuncture may be able to help you.. Expectant mothers may also benefit from acupuncture treatment for management of nausea and vomiting in early pregnancy.
In Chinese medical theory, the Spleen and Stomach organ systems are responsible for digesting food, transforming it into energy, and transporting it to various parts of the body. When these organs functions are impaired, problems will arise. Clinical trials have shown acupuncture to be effective in the treatment of many gastrointestinal disorders, such as diarrhoea, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting. Over the counter pills and laxatives can offer acute relief for digestive problems, but if left untreated, may develop into more chronic diseases. When coupled with a healthy lifestyle and diet, Chinese medicine may also assist in the management of weight and appetite control.