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Traditional Chinese Medicine
Do you know someone who suffers from miscarriage? Well, Chinese herbal medicine can help.
As a Chinese Herbalist and Acupuncturist who helped many women achieve the goal of motherhood, I know how devastating for a woman to experience a miscarriage, especially the same woman who may also struggle to conceive to start off, and already experienced many months or years of different fertility treatments. Miscarriage is absolutely a traumatic experience for the woman physically and mentally, some women even develop depression and anxiety afterward. What makes it even worse is some women experience repeated miscarriages.
What are the common reasons for miscarriage?
- embryo chromosome abnormality
- uterus or cervix problems: thin lining, fibroids, polyps, septate uterus, weak cervical tissues
- hormonal problems
- other conditions: uncontrolled diabetes, thyroid disease, autoimmune conditions,
Regardless of the above reasons, most of the repeated miscarriages are still unknown.
What is the available treatment out there for miscarriage?
For women, if the cause can be identified, then correct treatment will help them. For others, they will just continuously try until one of the pregnancies will stay. Traditional Chinese Medicine doctors normally suggest the patient stop trying for a few months and get the body stronger first, then try again.
Traditional Chinese medicine believes there is a life force (Chi) existing in our body from the moment you are an embryo in your mother’s womb until the end of your life. This life force is taking part in all the life stages of growth, development, maturity, etc. If the Chi of the embryo or fetus is weak or the Chi of the mother is weak, then miscarriage can easily occur. A qualified Chinese herbalist will assess the woman’s Chi condition and conclude a specific pattern diagnosis, then prescribe a mix of an herbal formula to strengthen the body Chi level which will assist the body to create a better egg, better fetus, and successful full-term pregnancy.
Chinese Medicine are natural herbs, you can think of them as the life force of mother nature which will help the human body to recover naturally and holistically.
Sinusitis is an inflammation of the paranasal sinuses (air-filled cavities inside the bones of the skull) that increases the production of mucus.
Sinusitis is a common health problem especially during the seasonal changes in Gauteng, due to excessive amounts of dust and pollen in the dry air. Sinusitis affects the person’s quality of life due to the often painful symptoms of constant nasal congestion and runny nose. Common illnesses related to sinusitis is infection, allergy and structural problems of the nasal passage.
Surgical operation would be the first choice for structural nasal problems, and oral antibiotic, antihistamines and local cortisol spray would be prescribed for sinusitis by doctors. There are many chronic sinusitis sufferers that have experienced only temporal relief from antibiotics and nasal spray, reason being that the long term use of antibiotics weakens a person’s immunity, cortisol sprays thin the membrane of nasal passages, and the body then becomes vulnerable to allergens and germs.
Chinese practitioners use Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture treatments to open the nasal passage, drain the mucus and strengthen the immunity, which will prevent re-infection and assist the long term healing of sinusitis.
The environment of the sinusitis person is also a large factor as well, that is why avoiding certain foods such as dairy products and keeping the living areas dust free are recommended. Articles
Headache disorders are among the most common disorders of the nervous system. Globally, it has been estimated that 47% of the adult population have experience headaches at least once within the last year in general. Headache disorders include migraine, tension/stress headache, cluster headache, etc.
The pain that headache and migraine sufferers endure can impact every aspect of their lives. Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine have been used to relieve Headaches and Migraines, as well as their underlying causes without any side effects associated. This form of treatment for headaches due to its efficiency and high success rate has become widely accepted in modern society.
Traditional Chinese Medicine believes that there is a life energy flowing through the body which is termed Qi. This energy flows through the body channels known as meridians that connect to all of our major organs. According to Chinese medical theory, illness arises when the cyclical flow of Qi in the meridians becomes blocked or weakened due to causes such as excess blood stasis, Qi/blood deficiency, and excess cold/dampness in the body.
Acupuncture is the stimulation of specific points located near or on the surface of the skin which has the ability to unblock the energy channels, thus relieving the pain. Modern science research shows that by inserting acupuncture needles on the specific energy points of the body, can stimulate the body to release natural pain-killer, anti-inflammation and anti-stress hormone (endorphins).
Chinese herbal medicine uses mainly plant based ingredients to restore the balance of the body by nourishing Qi/blood, regulating the flow of the Qi, and expelling the cold/dampness in the body.
For some people who are afraid of acupuncture treatment, the option of only Chinese herbal medicine will be prescribed.
For people with psoriasis, suffering from painful symptoms like inflamed, flaking, and red skin is not pleasant. The chronic skin condition is due to an overactive immune system that can be triggered by a number of internal and external factors. Many Western treatments include steroid creams and oral medications that come with a slew of unwanted side effects.
Below are alternative treatments that are safe and natural and can help reduce symptoms of psoriasis, leading you back to better health.
- Herbal Remedies
- Aloe Vera: The gel from this cactus plant can be used generously on your skin to reduce redness and scaling caused by psoriasis. Aloe vera can be found in almost any grocery or health store.
- Tea Tree Oil: Tea tree oil is thought to have antiseptic properties. It can soothe irritated skin or scalp and can be applied daily.
- Turmeric: Turmeric has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Because of this, turmeric has been found to reduce psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis flares. Turmeric can be found in pill form as well as powder form to be added to food.
- Dead Sea Salts: Soaking in a bath with Dead Sea salts or Epsom salts can remove scaly skin and reduce itching. It is recommended that you use warm water and stay in the tub for 15 minutes.
Mindfulness and meditation practices have been found to be effective in people suffering from chronic pain like psoriasis.
Meditation is the practice of focusing your attention on the moment and ridding yourself of all external thoughts you may be having. This can lead to a state of relaxation and calmness, bringing balance to your body and mind.
Mindfulness, which is practiced in meditation, includes becoming completely aware of your body, externally and internally. This can be a seated meditation that is focused on awareness of mind, body, and senses.
Not only is exercise important to maintain overall health and wellness, it is especially beneficial for people with psoriasis.
Because people with psoriasis have an increased risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, regular exercise can prove very helpful.
Many find it hard to exercise because of the chronic pain associated with psoriasis. Exercise programs in the water prove to be an effective alternative that is easier on the body and still allows you to build endurance and strength.
Other simple ways to fit more exercise into your day include short walks, taking the stairs, and stretching.
Seeing a licensed massage therapist can help reduce symptoms and pain. Massage promotes the function of muscle and connective tissue and can increase relaxation and circulation in the body.
Acupuncture has been proven to be effective in minimizing chronic pain in patients. Acupuncture takes a holistic approach with the body and symptoms you may be experiencing. By returning the body to its natural flow, acupuncture can help reduce the intensity of symptoms of psoriasis.
- Soak a towel in cold milk and apply to the affected area to relieve itching.
- Add ½ cup ground oatmeal into a warm bath.
- Rub the affected area with the inner side of a banana peel.
- Apply aloe vera gel to the affected area.
- Cut several fresh willow branches into 3-inch stems and place them in a pot with plenty of water. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the water becomes black. Wash affected areas with the water three times daily.
- Slice 15 water chestnuts and soak in 3 oz. of rice vinegar crush and store in a sealed jar. Apply the paste to the affected area and cover it with gauze. Change daily.
Western medicine is catching up now on the fact that there’s a link between the gut and the brain. Chinese medicine has known this for thousands of years. Western thinking can actually complement Chinese medicine and vice versa. Patients with a lot of anxiety and worry can be treated with vitamins, particularly B vitamins. When the Earth element organs of the Stomach and Spleen are weak we crave sugar more. Sugar will compound this problem causing further weakness and an accumulation of dampness. Sugar can interfere with the absorption of certain vitamins – especially B-vitamins which are important for cognitive function and mental health.
Yi, or thought, is the spirit of the spleen. This is why overthinking can weaken the spleen and a weakened spleen can lead to overthinking. As an acupuncturist and meditation teacher I hear patients telling me every day, “I can’t meditate because I can’t switch my mind off or I’ve got too many thoughts.” No amount of trying to control your thinking is going to work. Strengthening the Spleen will help and there are some ways you can:
- Eat your biggest meal between 7 and 11am.
- avoid damp, sugary, cold, raw and greasy foods.
- eat more warming foods, herbs like ginger, plenty of warming soups, cooked vegetables – particularly orange vegetables are really, really, really nourishing for the spleen. And barley, rice and ginger tea etc.
Overthinking is the mental aspect and worry is the emotional aspect of a weakened spleen. Worry actually knots the chi of the stomach and spleen. So if you’re suffering right now from overthinking and worry, it’s a reflection of the state of your body, the way the chi is moving in your body, in your digestive system and the way your digestive system is transforming energy for other systems. If the emotions are not being heard then that can cause a lot of issues, physically and mentally as well. 90% of what I see coming into the treatment room is emotional in nature, compounded stuck emotion and then all the overthinking and the stories on top that have come from trying to work out why you are feeling that way. Having acupuncture and giving yourself space and time to process your emotions in a healthy way is the best treatment for this. The earth element also thrives on a good routine, eating at regular times, going to bed, getting up at regular times is important. Ideally you want to be going to bed as early as possible, waking up as early as possible and eating your main meal as early as possible for energy, for immunity, for lifelong strong earth element and clarity of mind.
Let’s talk about late summer – from an acupuncturist’s view.
The season of the late summer is the time of the stomach and spleen. The summer season actually belongs to the
heart, heart and small intestine, the late summer which is that hazy time between summer and autumn. It’s that time
when yin and yang feel really balanced. When it’s not too hot, it’s not cold yet, there’s a slight crispness in the air
early morning and late evening. It’s a time of perfect balance at the end of summer, and it’s also the harvest time,
suggesting that there’s a sense of abundance. You’ll notice, there’s an abundance of food ripening, quite literally one
the vine. This is when the earth element is at its peak.
The fascinating thing about the earth element is that it also has a season in between every other season. There’s a
little window in between every season where we have ‘late summer’ again, even in-between winter and spring, in
between spring and summer, definitely in-between summer and autumn and in between autumn and winter as well.
These are little windows in-between every season which are known as late summer, or earth season are times of
This time between seasons is a time of everything coming back to the core – all of your energies coming back into
the center, grounding, rebalancing and then ready to go again into a new season which has new opportunities and
new challenges. At the time of writing we’re in the earth element now, we’re crossing over from spring into
summer. So this is a perfect opportunity for you to come back to your center, spend a little bit of time regrouping,
grounding and preparing for what’s coming next in the summer months. When we do this, we give our body an
abundance of energy again to work with and do whatever it needs to do to balance itself in the next season. There’s
nothing for you to do, just come back to ground zero and give your body a rest. Get grounded in nature, rest up and
your body does what it knows it needs to do with the energy. Your acupuncturist will also be able to treat these
organs and maximise your ability to recharge these organs in their horary time.
If you are an Earth element constitutional type you can also receive treatment on the Stomach and spleen during
their horary time of day. Receiving treatment between 7am and 11 am is the best time to treat these organs. Each
organ has its own time of day where it’s at its strongest. The time of day for the Earth element, Stomach and Spleen,
is 7-9am, and 9-11am. The old housewife tale says eat breakfast like a king, eat lunch like a prince and eat dinner
like a pauper. This is true because the chi is the strongest in the digestive system in the stomach between 7:00 and
9:00AM, and in the spleen between 9:00 and 11:00AM. Eating your biggest meal of the day between these times
means you’re going to have optimum digestion, and your body is going to be able to take the most chi from the food
and transform it to give your body the most energy available. Eating your biggest meals at the opposite times will
have the opposite effect, as there’s the least amount of chi in the digestive system 12 hours later. So between
7:00AM and 11:00AM is when we’ve got the most chi in the digestive system, and then 12 hours later, between
7:00PM and 11:00PM we’ve got the least.
If you want to learn what your element constitutional type is, come on in! I may be able to shed some light on this
What better way to celebrate and support the mothers in your life this year than with an acupuncture appointment?
As a one-time mother’s day gift, acupuncture is a relaxing, revitalizing hour all for herself.
As a regular part of her health routine, acupuncture can keep her from getting sick frequently and offer a holistic treatment option for a variety of women’s health issues.
Not convinced? Here are four ways acupuncture supports women’s health and would make a great gift for any mom or woman you want to celebrate this May. continue reading
Three thousand years ago, when Chinese medicine was first being practiced, there was no light or electricity. No way to mask the darkness of winter. No way, either, to ignore the longer, warmer days of springtime. Because it is such an ancient practice, a lot of the wisdom of Traditional Chinese Medicine comes from a time when people spent much more time outside, paying attention to the natural world around them. continue reading