Chinese Medicine

Chinese medicine encompasses the cumulative wisdom of over 2,500 years of practice. It is the world's oldest continually practiced formal medical system. Chinese medicine is a safe, effective and holistic alternative or complement to Western medicine that works to restore the body's natural state of balance or homeostasis so that we can access our innate healing ability. Many therapies or modalities are practiced in Chinese medicine, including acupuncture, electrical acupuncture, herbal medicine, cupping, moxibustion, dietary counseling, various forms of exercise, and Chinese massage. Practitioners of Chinese medicine in California undergo four years of graduate-level schooling, pass the California State licensing exam, and must maintain active licensure. California has the most stringent requirements for practitioners of Chinese medicine.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is one of the primary modalities of Chinese medicine. It involves the insertion of sterile, disposable, hair-thin needles into specific sites on the body known as acupuncture points. Thousands of years ago the Chinese discovered and mapped out the location of these points. Recently, electromagnetic research has confirmed their existence and location. Stimulation of these points has a physiological effect on the body and is used to treat specific health problems. Several other techniques, in addition to acupuncture, can be used to stimulate these points. One of these is microcurrent therapy. Using very gentle electrical currents, it is a non-needle modality used to treat pain, balance meridians, and treat specific health problems.

How acupuncture works

According to Chinese medical theory, a vital energy called Qi (pronounced "chee") runs in a circuit through the human body. If the flow of Qi through this circuit is disrupted (through stress, poor diet, trauma, injury, etc.), it will cause an imbalance in the body and lead to symptoms of one kind or another. Through the use of acupuncture we can reestablish the flow of Qi, create balance, and activate the body's innate healing ability. Western science now acknowledges the effects of acupuncture on many of the body's systems, including the neurological, endocrine, respiratory, and digestive systems.

Chinese herbal medicine

Chinese herbal medicine draws from a vast pharmacopoeia of over 5,000 herbs, minerals, and animal products. These substances are combined into formulas that are used to treat specific ailments. The formulas consist of very specific combinations of these substances, each having a unique purpose within the formula. They are dispensed as powders or pills, or in a raw form that is brewed into a tea. This form of herbal medicine is so effective because it takes into account the condition being treated, as well as the constitution of the individual, creating the most effective formula for each person. Therefore, three patients being treated for the same illness could potentially get three very different herbal formulas as part of their treatment.