Acupuncture and Chinese herbs in London
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) using acupuncture and Chinese herbs originated in the ancient civilisations of China, and has developed over millennia. Through a combination of herbal medicines, acupuncture and various other mind and body practices, TCM practitioners can help treat and prevent health problems. In the West, TCM is often taken as a complementary health approach.
The use of acupuncture and Chinese herbs is safe when the practitioner is experienced and uses sterile needles and uncontaminated herbs. It is important to note that acupuncture can cause undesirable side effects if performed improperly, and some of the herbs can interact with certain drugs. If you are thinking of taking on any complementary health approaches, give Dr (TCM) Attilio D'Alberto all the information to promote coordinated and safe treatment.
History of Chinese medicine
TCM has its roots in the ancient philosophy of Taoism, dating back more than two and a half millennia. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs, in particular, are widely used as complementary medicines in many Western countries. The number of acupuncturists is continuously on the rise, and the practice of other facets of TCM like Tai Chi and Qi Gong is becoming increasingly commonplace among people in countries all over the world.
When considering ancient medical systems, you must remove the context of modern science-based practices of medicine and health promotion. The ancient beliefs that make up the framework of TCM include the following:
- The systems of the human body work in the same way as the systems of the universe
- One must maintain harmony between two opposing complementary forces: Yin and Yang. Disease comes from imbalances in these forces
- All phenomena are represented by five elements: earth, wood, fire, metal and water
- The life energy, Qi (chi), must flow uninterrupted around the body to maintain good health
Understanding these concepts is helpful for knowing the origins of TCM and the thought processes behind its practices, but any studies into its effectiveness will be carried out in the context of scientific knowledge and understanding of the human body.
Acupuncture involves stimulating very specific points of the body using fine pins, which are then manipulated with the hands or electrically stimulated. Acupuncture regulates energy and blood flow movement in the body and balances hormones and internal organs allowing the body to find it's own balance and regain it's health.
There is a pharmacological reference book called the Materia Medica that TCM practitioners use for thousands of medicinal substances, primarily involving the use of plants. The practice involves the use of different parts of the plants, such as the stems, roots, leaves, seeds and flowers. Herbs are often combined to create formulas which are delivered as powder, capsules, or tablets.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbs should not be used to replace conventional care techniques, but rather to complement them. If you see a TCM practitioner, you should enquire about their training and experience to ensure you will receive high quality treatment. Our Chinese trained acupunctirist and herbalist studied for 5 years full time.
There are many, many benefits to be enjoyed from well-practiced acupuncture and Chinese herbs treatments, but it is vital that you take the necessary steps to ensure you are safe and receiving the best care.
Contact the London Acupuncture Clinic today for more information.