The term “Chinese Medicine” refers to a number of different treatments and practices.
Chinese medicine, or TCM, often referes to acupuncture, herbal formulas and their theoretical basis. Chinese Medicine also includes Tuina/Shiatsu massage therapy, diet counselling and modification, and lifestyle counselling. Traditionally, the theory of Chinese Medicine was a theory of nature, health and disease. The forces underlying the theory are described as:
Yin and Yang;
The Three Essences;
Eight Principles of Therapy; and,
The Fourteen Meridians.
When all of the underlying forces and systems are in harmony and balance, health can be achieved and maintained.
The practice and teaching of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is more than 5000 years old. The earliest text on the subject, The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine (Huang Ti Nei Jing Su Wen Ling Shu’), said to be written in the 1st and 2nd centuries BC, is still relevant to the teaching of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine today. Is TCM and Acupuncture right for me?
Scientific theory and investigations in recent history have added to our understanding of the physiological mechanisms that may contribute to the acupuncture effect, and to our understanding of the pharmacological basis of Chinese herbal medicine. However, the unifying framework of this form of holistic therapy was developed and refined during 5000 years of clinical application in China and many Asian countries.
The major theoretical foundations of this science remain unchanged. Its continued evolution as a therapeutic system, in view of the impact of Western medical practices, attests to the effectiveness of this method of treatment and the soundness of the ancient theoretical basis of diagnosis and practice that are used by the traditionally trained practitioner.