What is Chinese medicine?
Traditional Chinese medicine is thousands of years old and has changed little over the centuries. As a complete system of healthcare, Chinese medicine's basic concept is that a vital force of life surges through the body (also called Qi). Any imbalance to this life force can cause disease and illness, according to Chinese medicine. The imbalance, in turn, is caused by an imbalance in the opposite and complementary forces that make up the life force, called Yin and Yang.
To regain balance, the belief is that the balance between the internal body organs and the external elements of earth, fire, water, wood, and metal must be adjusted.
Treatment to regain balance may involve:
- moxibustion (the burning of herbal leaves on or near the body)
- cupping (the use of warmed glass jars to create suction on certain points of the body)
- herbal remedies
- movement and concentration exercises (such as Tai Chi)