5 treatment approaches
There are 5 different approaches that can comprise a Chinese medicine treatment. Together they form a comprehensive approach to treat your presenting pattern of disharmony and can allow balance and wellness to be restored.
Massage and body therapies
Chinese massage also called Tuina or Anmo uses the principle of the body’s meridian system with its acupoints to guide the flow of strokes and pressure. These meridians are complex pathways throughout the body that carry and store the life energy (or Qi). The concept of Qi is an integral aspect of Chinese medicine and is used to gauge the body’s vitality and immunity. There are many types of Qi that relate to the complex physiology of the body. Acupressure (Anmo) is delivered through a towel and followed by massage (Tuina) using our organic local cold pressed oil infused with aromatic botanicals.
The combination of these massage techniques is highly relaxing and can provide a pathway for acupuncture to be more effective.
Other adjuncts to massage include Cupping therapy and Clearing (called Guasha).
Cupping involves the placement of glass suction cups onto the muscles and acupoints of the body. It is used to soften and release tight muscles, invigorate the flow of blood into tissues to effect healing, stimulate the function of the acupoints that they are placed on, or to remove pathogenic influences from the meridian system. It may leave some superficial discolouration similar to light bruising on the muscles, which usually clears within 2-3 days and is not painful. Skilful cupping therapy can lead to a noticeable increase in vitality and energy levels and a more integrated fascia.
Guasha involves the use of a porcelain tool which is stroked across sections of tight muscles and constrained meridian areas to release inflammation, heat and tension. Gua means to rub and Sha is the name for the petechiae that is brought to the surface. It may leave some sections of redness on the skin which usually clears within 2-3 days as the stagnant or toxic Qi leaves the subcutaneous layer, leaving the muscles softer and more pliable. It produces an anti-inflammatory and immune protective effect that persists for the days following the treatment.
In my practice I also use warm stone therapy on areas of the body where there is hypo-function or congestion, and fluid retention. This is also very relaxing and nurturing!
The system of acupuncture has been developed and used in China for thousands of years. It relies on the theory of the body’s meridian system and the acupoints that lie along these pathways. These acupoints are located where the meridian Qi accumulates and pools and coincides with anatomical landmarks. Acupoints are linked to our internal physiology and can stimulate and moderate visceral organ function and the body’s other integrated systems. Most patients find acupuncture a comfortable and relaxing experience.
Only single use disposable ultra-fine Japanese needles are used in this clinic. Needles are inserted superficially into the skin and left in place for 10-20 minutes.
While receiving acupuncture it is important to relax and not move your limbs around. Please do not wash any areas where the needles have been inserted until one hour after your treatment.
In Chinese medicine the herbal formula can be the on-going part of the treatment and is seen as being integral to treating chronic or long lasting conditions. The formulas typically comprise from 2-18 different herbs that are crafted to form a synergising action to resolve the presenting pattern of disharmony and encourage the return of balance to the body.
During your consultation I will gather your medical information, and your signs and symptoms with the assistance of pulse and tongue examination, to arrive at a diagnosis. This diagnosis leads to a treatment principle that is expressed by the herbal formula prescribed.
Herbal medicine can be presented to the patient in various forms: as small pills of compressed herbal extracts, usually used to treat more long term on-going problems; as a powder to be added into warm water, formulated to suit the individual presenting complaint; as granulations produced by high tech freeze drying of herbal liquids, which tend to be more expensive but conveniently dissolve in water and are preferred in paediatrics; or as decoctions from raw herb materials often used in cases of highly acute or serious presentations.
Your preferences and lifestyle will help me determine what form to best prescribe your formula in for you to integrate into your daily routine.
At this clinic I only dispense plant material and minerals in accord with non-harm and so all herbal products are vegan friendly. Additionally I am proud to dispense premium herbs from the ethical and inspiring Empirical Health company – an Australian company stocking certified organic and AAA grade herbs that are rigorously and independently tested. They provide the quality and supply assurance that I need, to confidently pass on to my patients in our rapidly changing world.
Different climates, changing seasons, different people and their particular illnesses and life stages all require different eating habits to maintain harmony in the body and mind. Chinese medicine understands that all foods have their own unique nature that characterises their effects on the body. With Chinese dietetics, the patient is educated to understand their constitution and the particular foods suited to support wellness and a return to balance. The body and mind perform best with a diet that is aligned to the season, your locality and attuned to your individual constitution.
One of my roles as a practitioner is to support my patients to work with their constitutional type and the foods that can support a return to wellness or an increased vitality.
Exercise and lifestyle
In my practice I work with patients to align their lifestyle to reflect the seasons. This can be as simple as including some new seasonal behaviours and food inclusions, or evolving a new rhythm of lifestyle, work and diet that spans the rhythm of a year.
Regular exercise that is targeted to balance and strengthen the body, and fits your current stage of life vitality also plays a role in treatment.
My approach is to work with my patients to align modern health research findings with the ancient wisdom of Chinese medicine to balance health and lifestyle.
By combining these 5 approaches of Chinese medicine, the patient receives a holistic treatment experience that can encourage the body and mind to return to balance with vitality restored.