Chinese Medicine Terminology

Acupuncture is: a form of treatment where the acupuncture needles are applied at specific acupuncture points. These acupuncture points belong to our body's internal organ pathways which are called meridians or Qi (Chi) energy path ways.

Chinese Medicine Melbourne

Some of the terms you may come across:

Qi: is our vital life energy. This life energy flows through a network of meridians or pathways in our body. Ai unites all parts of the body into a single, integrated whole. In a disruption to the flow of Qi.

Xue: is defined as the blood and its functions. Food essence from the spleen and stomach meridians produces blood which is circulated through the body providing all organs and tissues with nutrition and moisture. Also to nourish the brain, a good supply of blood will ensure vigour and a clear conscious.

Yin & Yang Theory: is based on the philosophical idea of two complimentary poles or opposites. This system sees all things as part of an integrated whole. As Yin and Yang exists in everything in nature, it also underlies all aspects of Traditional Chinese Medical theory. The human organic structure and functions as well as pathological changes are explained by the theory of Yin and Yang. Good health then, is the balance of Yin and Yang in the whole person and disease is the imbalance of these aspects. The Traditional Chinese Doctor will prevent and treat illness by adjusting any imbalance in Yin and Yang thus harmonizing the internal organs.

Needle Acupuncture: the Chinese believe that vital life energy flows through a series of twenty-four pathways or meridians. Inserting needles into specific points along the meridians, (the human body) increases energy flow by breaking down and blockages and draining away excessive pressure. Acupuncture therapy restores normal energy flow so that perfect equilibrium and harmony exists throughout the body. Acupuncture is highly effective in giving relief to patients suffering chronic pain from backache, headache or abdominal pain. The World Heath Organisation recognises the helpful effect acupuncture can have on many other disorders like asthma, PMT, fatigue, insomnia and many more. Efficient treatment with Needle Acupuncture includes constant manipulation throughout the duration of the treatment. This is a time consuming process that is usually beyond the time constraints of the practitioner. When manipulation is applied, the patient often feels pain or discomfort, increasing any nervousness or apprehension already present.

Needle Electro Acupuncture: Low frequency electrical stimulation is combined with acupuncture needle techniques to improve and regulate stimulation of the acupuncture points. Deep sensory nerves are stimulated releasing endorphins that act by blocking the pain signal. Scientific investigations have shown that analgesic requirements can be reduced by more than half for patients recovering from surgery by electroacupuncture. Disadvantages are associated mostly with the use of needles. For example, needle placement must be at a specific depth into the skin to achieve effective treatment. Acupuncture needles are very thin and when the electrodes are attached the needle depth and/or angle can be altered. This can potentially damage internal body organs or membranes. The electrical stimulation through Acupuncture needles causes them to vibrate, creating comfort, pain and nervousness. Needles can also break with the application of electrodes although this is rare.

Laser Acupuncture: applies heat to the traditional acupuncture points for stimulation. Disadvantages include; only one point can be treated briefly, at one time, application of heat is not always an appropriate treatment; there is a possibility of damage to sensitive body organs.

TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation): This treatment method is often used as a postoperative analgesic. Sterile, gelled electrode patches are applied to the skin locally. A battery is then connected to generate either continuous or intermittent stimulation. TENS treatment stimulates nerve fibres only. This is not a replacement treatment for acupuncture as the acupuncture points are disregarded in favour of the site of pain. Disadvantages include skin irritations from the gel or the adhesives used. TENS should not be used on patients with cardiac pacemakers or pregnant women in their first trimester.

Needle Free Acupuncture (SSP Therapy): This is the most advanced acupuncture technology in the world and is exclusive in Australia to Harmony Chinese Medical Centre Pty Ltd.

Traditionally acupuncture with needles has been the most effective way to restore equilibrium to the body. Modern techniques have now been combined with traditional acupuncture to develop Needlefree Acupuncture or Silver Spike Point Therapy All of the disadvantages of needle acupuncture as described above are eliminated with SSP Therapy. Stimulation is achieved without needle penetration with a minor electrical impulse replacing the insertion of needles. Conical metal electrodes are positioned onto the skin, directing the electrical impulse to the acupuncture point while also gently stimulating the surrounding area through the wide electrode plate. Many points can be treated simultaneously without time restrictions. The electrical frequencies are regulated and adjustable depending on the individual's condition.

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