What is Chinese Medicine?

Chinese Medicine is a system of primary health care that includes acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, remedial massage (anmo tuina), exercise and breathing therapy, diet and lifestyle advice. Traditional Chinese Medicine has an uninterrupted history of development in China and other parts of East Asia dating back thousands of years. The primary feature of modern Chinese Medicine is the premise that good health relies on the restoration and maintenance of harmony, balance and order to the individual.

Chinese Medicine takes a holistic approach to understanding normal function and disease processes and focuses as much on the prevention of illness as it does on the treatment.

What happens in a Chinese Medicine appointment?

Prior to arriving at your appointment at the clinic our Chinese Medicine practitioner will have spoken to you on the phone about your particular area of concern.  He will still do an initial assessment including a brief conversation that will give you a chance to fully explain why you are seeking his help.

He will also gather information from “non-verbal elements,” such as your demeanour, movement, voice, and complexion. He may examine your tongue, take your pulse and temperature, and then feel your skin, muscle tone and internal organs.  He will be assessing your overall physical and mental health obtaining a whole body picture.

Your Chinese Medicine practitioner is looking for imbalances. These imbalances manifest themselves as disharmony, for example, an earache, a headache or a constant sore throat.

The Chinese Medicine practitioner would look at these symptoms in a wider context, seeking to find if this disharmony is caused by excesses like undue stress or if it is caused by deficiency e.g. not enough food or sleep.

How does the practitioner decide on how to treat?

Once the Chinese Medicine practitioner has recognised the pattern of disharmony and made a diagnosis, he works with you to resolve the disharmony.

The guiding treatment principle is to create harmony between yin (known in Chinese philosophy as the passive female principle of the universe, characterised as female and sustaining and associated with earth, dark, and cold) and Yang (known in Chinese philosophy as the active male principle of the universe, characterized as male and creative and associated with heaven, heat, and light).  The practitioner is looking for the easiest and least invasive way possible to intervene and treat, without creating further disharmony.

The Chinese Medicine practitioner seeks to remove what is excessive and to replenish what is deficient.

The focus is always on you and for this reason the treatment is highly personalised. The practitioner will take into account your current state of health, diet and lifestyle – all the factors that influence you as a person.

What might my treatment include?

Your treatment can be from a selection of options – this usually employs a combination of several methods, ranging from acupuncture, herbal medicine to patient education and lifestyle counselling.

Our Chinese Medicine practitioner may also prescribe herbal formulations for a certain length of time to help facilitate recovery or to maintain health and prevent disease.  These come in pill form making them easier and more pleasant to take than perhaps has been the case in the past.

What else could my treatment include?

In addition to the clinic treatments, you will need to practice most of the methods recommended that can restore and cultivate harmony at home and in your daily life. Home practice methods recommended may include dietary and meditation, lifestyle suggestions, self-massage, stretching, and various physical exercises.


Nothing in this website should be taken as a claim to treat any specific condition.