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COVID-19 Update

SEO Friendly Title: COVID-19 Update

3 August 2020

To support Victorian government effort to curtail the spread of coronavirus, Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic will temporarily stop taking new patients, and will continue to serve existing patients via adjusted methods from 4 August 2020. We will re-assess the situation week by week.

To reschedule appointment to with Paul or delay to September 

To express interest to take online or phone appointment with Zhen

Future appointments

Check our regular blogs

During this difficult time, please check our regular “Blogs” for free advice on selfcare.

Let us work together to combat the pandemic.

Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic wishes you well and safe during this difficult time. Remember to be gentle to yourself and to your family.

14 July 2020

In responding to the 2nd spike of COVID-19, Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic is adopting more strict preventative measures, in addition to our existing infection control procedure and social distancing policy (Please see entry of 1 May 2020).

Stay safe, and stay well. Let us work through this time together.

1 May 2020

Geelong Chinese Medicine is now resuming its operation from 1st of May 2020.

Here are some procedures we have in place to keep everyone safe during COVID-19 time.

Screening

Self-check

COVID-19 Symptom Checker

Infection control

All practitioners at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic underwent further training about infection control associated with COVID-19. We adopt strict infection control procedures in our clinic.

We provide sanitisers for patients to sanitise their hands prior to entering the treatment room and when they leave the room.

Waiting room arrangement

Stay at home policy

Other important information

Lifeline: 13 11 14

Beyond Blue: 1300 22 4636

Coronavirus Health Information Line: 1800 020 080

 

27 March 2020

To support government effort to curtail the spread of coronavirus, we will temporarily suspend face to face consultation and acupuncture service from Mon 30th March. We will re-assess the situation week by week.

Let us work together to combat the pandemic.

Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic wishes you well and safe during this difficult time. Remember to be gentle to yourself and to your family.


Home

SEO Friendly Title: Chinese medicine, acupuncture & herbal treatments in Geelong

For more than 15 years, Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic – GCMC – has being providing acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine to the community of Geelong, the Surf Coast and surrounding areas from the headquarters of the Corio Bay Health Group.

Our logo is an ancient symbol, representing peace, greatness and harmony. It has the symbol of Yang under and Yin above, indicating the inner strength and outward gentleness, to achieve resilience and peace.

Icon

At the Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, we are passionate about, and work towards, relieving your suffering, building your inner strength and bringing out peace. All of our practitioners have dual registration of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine with Australian Health Practitioner Registration Agency (AHPRA). We are highly qualified and experienced practitioners.

We use traditional as well as modern acupuncture, such as laser acupuncture, electrical acupuncture and needle-free acupuncture. We often combine Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture.


What we treat

SEO Friendly Title: What we treat

What do we treat

Chinese Medicine understands that good health relies on the restoration and maintenance of normal function, and focuses on the prevention of illness as well as treatment. We use acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, and Chinese medicine wisdom to improve your symptoms and address the causes.
The commonest conditions that we treat and produce effective results are:

We use Chinese medicine principles and theories to diagnose and treat a wide range conditions, including

For a further listing of conditions commonly treated by Chinese medicine, including acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, please see lists the AACMA official website (click on the links below).

Conditions suitable for acupuncture treatment
Conditions suitable for Chinese herbal medicine treatments


Services

SEO Friendly Title: Services at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic

At Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, we see each person as an individual because each of us has different constitutions and past history. We develop personalised treatment plans for each person to achieve the long-term result.

Our approaches are

Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic services

Putting you at the centre of our practice, at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic we take a holistic approach to your health and well-being, with services to boost your mind-spirit-body connection for optimum function, happiness, peace and clarity of mind.

As well as traditional acupuncture, our Chinese medicine practitioners are skilled in laser acupuncture, electroacupuncture and other non-invasive treatments, such as cupping, moxibustion and the art of Qigong.


About

SEO Friendly Title: About Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic's practitioners

All of us hold high-level professional qualifications and a wealth of clinical experience in Australia. We hold dual registration of acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine with Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency  (AHPRA).


Information

SEO Friendly Title: Geelong Chinese Medicine Centre information for patients

At Geelong Chinese Medicine Centre, we provide all information our patients need to know before their treatment, including acupuncture insurance cover and what to expect when you make your appointment with us.


Blog

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中文页面

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Geelong中医诊所在过去近二十年中以高尚的医德和精湛的技术,衷心为Geelong人民竭诚服务。

医资力量
诊所的三位医生都是澳大利亚注册的中医师。

郑真医生系世界著名的南京中医药大学的毕业生,有二十多年的临床经验,墨尔本大学的博士,皇家理工大学(RMIT)副教授,擅长將中医和现代医学知识结合以治疗各类疼痛及其他常见病。

Lauren张医生系世界著名的南京中医药大学的医学硕士,有十几年的临床经验,擅长治疗女性疾病和不孕症.

Paul Burn 医生是澳洲培养的中医师,他又兼教气功和太极,将这两种传统中医体疗融入中医治疗中。

郑真医生和Lauren张医生都能够用流利的英文和华语(普通话 )与患者沟通。

服务理念
Geelong中医诊所以患者为第一。 用中药、针灸、拔罐、耳针等中医传统方法为大众服务,治疗结束后还会传授患者在家用中医养身和膳食调理,以便巩固和提高治疗效果。

地理位置

Geelong中医诊所位于Geelong中心的一家大型西人理疗中心中,我们与西医医生、理疗师及其他职业医师有着密切的合作关系以为患者提高疗效。


Contact

SEO Friendly Title: Contact Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic

Located within the Corio Bay Sports Medicine Centre
283 Latrobe Terrace
Geelong,
VIC
3220
03 5221 0556
03 5229 4847
Reception opening hours for inquiries and booking:
Mon-Thu 8.00am–8.00pm
Fri 8.00am-7.00pm
Sat 8.00am-1.00pm

Free parking is available at the Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic.


Bibliography*

SEO Friendly Title: Bibliography

Allergies and Other Conditions

Bob, F., & Philippe, S. (2001) The Treatment of Modern Western Medical Diseases with Chinese Medicine. Boulder, CO: Blue Poppy Press.

Will, M., & Jane, L. (2008) Clinical Handbook of Internal Medicine – The treatment of Disease with Traditional Chinese Medicine. Sydney: University of Western Sydney.

Cupping & Moxibustion

Chirali,. I. (2007). Traditional Chinese Medicine Cupping Therapy (2nd ed.) Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier.

Cao, H., Han, M., Li, X., Dong, S., Shang, Y., Wang, Q., … Liu, J. (2010). Clinical research evidence of cupping therapy in China: a systematic literature review. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 10(1). doi:10.1186/1472-6882-10-70

Cao, H., Li, X., & Liu, J. (2012). An updated review of the efficacy of cupping therapy. PLoS One, 7(2), doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031793.

Dharmananda, S. (1999). Cupping.
http://www.itmonline.org/arts/cupping.htm (Accessed 01 Sep 2018)

Mehta, P., & Dhapte, V. (2015). Cupping therapy: A prudent remedy for a plethora of medical ailments. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, 5(3), 127–134. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtcme.2014.11.036

Lifestyle, Dietary & Exercise Advice

Maciocia, G. (1989). The foundations of Chinese medicine: A comprehensive text for acupuncturists and herbalists. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

Guo, B., & Powell, A. (2002). Listen to Your Body: The Wisdom of the Dao. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press.

Pain & Headache

Painaustralia (n.d), Fact sheet 1-The Nature and Science of Pain [Online] Available from: http://painaustralia.staging3.webforcefive.com.au/static/uploads/files/painaust-factsheet1-wftffeqmvcqm.pdf [Accessed 8 Aug 2018].

MayoClinic (2016),Understanding Pain, 2016 [Online] Available from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/understanding-pain/art-20208632 [Accessed 8 Aug 2018].

Russell, D. & Hopper Koppelman, M. (2017). Acupuncture For Pain. Evidence Based Acupuncture. Available from: https://www.evidencebasedacupuncture.org/present-research/pain-2/#foot_loc_16603_18 [Accessed 8 Aug 2018].

Xiang, A., Cheng, K., Shen, X., Xu, P., & Liu, S. (2017). The Immediate Analgesic Effect of Acupuncture for Pain: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM, 2017, 3837194. http://doi.org/10.1155/2017/3837194

Weidenhammer W, Streng A, Linde K, Hoppe A, Melchart D. Acupuncture for chronic pain within the research program of 10 German Health Insurance Funds–basic results from an observational study. Complementary therapies in medicine. 2007;15(4):238-46.

American Specialty Health Incorporated Health Services Department. (2016). Acupuncture: Does Acupuncture Provided Within a Managed Care Setting Meet Patient Expectations and Quality Outcomes?, 1–12. http://files.clickdimensions.com/ashcompaniescom-a7oce/files/acupuncturecahps.pdf

Yin, C., Buchheit, T. E., & Park, J. J. (2017). Acupuncture for chronic pain: an update and critical overview. Current Opinion in Anaesthesiology, 1. https://doi.org/10.1097/ACO.0000000000000501

H. Y. Chiu, Y. J. Hsieh, and P. S. Tsai, “Systematic review and meta-analysis of acupuncture to reduce cancer-related pain,” European Journal of Cancer Care, vol. 26, no. 2, Article ID e12457, 2017.

C. H. Y. Lau, X. Wu, and V. C. H. Chung, “Acupuncture and Related Therapies for Symptom Management in Palliative Cancer Care: systematic Review and Meta-Analysis,” Medicine (Baltimore), vol. 95, no. 20, Article ID e90e6, p. e2901, 2016.

Z. Lu, H. Dong, Q. Wang, and L. Xiong, “Perioperative acupuncture modulation: More than anaesthesia,” British Journal of Anaesthesia, vol. 115, no. 2, pp. 183–193, 2015.

Flaws, B. (2000). Curing Fibromyalgia Naturally With Chinese Medicine. Colorado. Blue Poppy Press.

Maciocia, G. (1989). The foundations of Chinese medicine: A comprehensive text for acupuncturists and herbalists. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.

Prevention, Energy & Well-being

Chang, S., & Wang, H. (2004). Health promotion in traditional Chinese medicine: preventive treatment of a disease. Hu Li Za Zhi, 51(2), 23-7. Review. Chinese. PubMed PMID: 15137181.

Bian, L., Liu, Z., & Li, G. (2015). Promoting health wellness—The essentials of Chinese medicine. Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine, 21(8), 563. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11655-015-2100-y

Koithan, M., & Wright, C. (2010). Promoting Optimal Health with Traditional Chinese Medicine. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners : JNP, 6(4), 306–307. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.nurpra.2010.01.013

Chen, L., & Su, Y. (2007). Health promotion for deficient constitution in Chinese medicine. Hu Li Za Zhi, 54(4), 16-20. Chinese. PubMed PMID: 17654423.

Zeng Y, Luo T, Xie H, Huang M, Cheng A. (2014). Health benefits of Qigong or Tai Chi for cancer patients: a systematic review and meta-analyses. Complement Ther Med, 22,173–186.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2013.11.010

Qigong

Tai Chi Australia (2017), What is Qigong? [Online] Available from:
http://www.taichiaustralia.com.au/Qigong/what-is-qigong [Accessed 13 Aug 2018].

Jahnke, R., Larkey, L., Rogers, C., Etnier, J., & Lin, F. (2010). A Comprehensive Review of Health Benefits of Qigong and Tai Chi. American Journal of Health Promotion : AJHP, 24(6):1–25. http://doi.org/10.4278/ajhp.081013-LIT-248

Sancier, K. M., & Holman, D. (2004). Multifaceted health benefits of medical Qigong. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine: JACM, 10(1):63–166. http://doi.org/10.1089/107555304322849084

Xiangcai, X. (2000). Qigong for treating common ailments: the essential guide to self-healing. (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: YMAA Publication Center.

Yang, J.M., (2008). A Brief History of Qigong. [Online] Available from: http://legacy.ymaa.com/articles/history/history-qigong. [Accessed 13 Aug 2018].

Yang, J.M., (2013). What is Taijiquan? [Online] Available from: http://legacy.ymaa.com/articles/2013/05/what-is-taijiquan [Accessed 13 Aug 2018].

Ladawan S., Klarod K., Philippe M., Menz V., Versen I., Gatterer H., Burtscher M. (2017), Effect of Qigong exercise on cognitive function, blood pressure and cardiorespiratory fitness in healthy middle-aged subjects. Complement. Ther. Med.33:39–45. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2017.05.005

Zou, L., SasaKi, J. E., Wang, H., Xiao, Z., Fang, Q., & Zhang, M. (2017). A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Baduanjin Qigong for Health Benefits: Randomized Controlled Trials. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM. http://doi.org/10.1155/2017/4548706

Yang, H., Wu, X., & Wang, M. (2017). The Effect of Three Different Meditation Exercises on Hypertension: A Network Meta-Analysis. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : eCAM. http://doi.org/10.1155/2017/9784271

Cheung, B.M., Lo, J.L., Fong, D.Y., Chan, M.Y., Wong, S.H., Wong, V.C., Lam, K.S., Lau, C.P., Karlberg, J.P. (2005), Randomised controlled trial of qigong in the treatment of mild essential hypertension. Journal of Human Hypertension.19(9):697–704. https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.jhh.1001884

Lomas-Vega, R., Obrero-Gaitán, E., Molina-Ortega, F.J., Del-Pino-Casado, R. (2017), Tai chi for risk of falls. A meta-analysis. J Am Geriatr Soc.65(9):2037-43.https://doi.org/10.1111/jgs.15008

Tsang, H. W., Fung, K. M., Chan, A. S., Lee, G. and Chan, F. (2006), Effect of a qigong exercise programme on elderly with depression. Int. J. Geriat. Psychiatry, 21:890-897. doi:10.1002/gps.1582.

Li, F., Fisher, K.J., Harmer, P. , Irbe, D. , Tearse, R.G. and Weimer, C. (2004), Tai Chi and Self‐Rated Quality of Sleep and Daytime Sleepiness in Older Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 52:892-900. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-5415.2004.52255.x

Fransen, M., Nairn, L., Winstanley, J., Lam, P. and Edmonds, J. (2007), Physical activity for osteoarthritis management: A randomized controlled clinical trial evaluating hydrotherapy or Tai Chi classes. Arthritis & Rheumatism, 57:407-414. doi:10.1002/art.22621

Chan, Kaiming et al. (2004), A randomized, prospective study of the effects of Tai Chi Chun exercise on bone mineral density in postmenopausal women
Arch Phys Med Rehabil, 85(5):717-22.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apmr.2003.08.091

Hamasaki, H. (2017), Exercise and gut microbiota: clinical implications for the feasibility of Tai Chi. J Integr Med.15(4):270–281.
https://doi.org/10.1016/S2095-4964(17)60342-X

Klein, P. (2017). Qigong in Cancer Care: Theory, Evidence-Base, and Practice. Medicines, 4(1),2. http://doi.org/10.3390/medicines4010002

Wang, C., Roubenoff, R., Lau, J., Kalish, R., Schmid, C.H., Tighiouart, H., Rones, R., Hibberd, P.L.(2005), Effect of Tai Chi in adults with rheumatoid arthritis, Rheumatology, 44(5):685–687. https://doi.org/10.1093/rheumatology/keh572

Ladawan, S., Klarod, K., Philippe, M., Menz, V., Versen, I., Gatterer, H., Burtscher, M. (2017), Effect of Qigong exercise on cognitive function, blood pressure and cardiorespiratory fitness in healthy middle-aged subjects. Complement Ther Med.33:39-45. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2017.05.005.

Wayne, P.M., Walsh, J.N., Taylor-Piliae, R.E., Wells, R.E., Papp, K.V., Donovan, N.J., & Yeh, G.Y. (2014). The Impact of Tai Chi on Cognitive Performance in Older Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 62(1):25–39. http://doi.org/10.1111/jgs.12611

Lauche, R., Langhorst, J., Dobos, G., Cramer, H. (2013), A systematic review and meta-analysis of Tai Chi for osteoarthritis of the knee. Complement Ther Med.21(4):396-406. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2013.06.001

Wang, C., Schmid, C. H., Iversen, M. D., Harvey, W. F., Fielding, R. A., Driban, J. B., … McAlindon, T. (2016). Comparative Effectiveness of Tai Chi Versus Physical Therapy for Knee Osteoarthritis: A Randomized Trial. Annals of Internal Medicine, 165(2):77–86. http://doi.org/10.7326/M15-2143

Zheng, G., Li, S., Huang, M., Liu, F., Tao, J., & Chen, L. (2015). The Effect of Tai Chi Training on Cardiorespiratory Fitness in Healthy Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. PLoS ONE,10(2). http://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0117360

Sleep Problems

Ann Pietrangelo and Stephanie Watson, “11 Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Your Body”. Available from https://www.healthline.com/health/sleep-deprivation/effects-on-body [Accessed 3 Sep 2018].

 


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About: Our Team

SEO Friendly Title: Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic Practitioners


What we treat: Pain & Headache

SEO Friendly Title: Pain & headache treatments in Geelong

Pain is a distressing sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage. Pain is your body’s way of alerting you to danger and letting you know what’s happening in your body. You perceive pain through sensory nerve cells. How you feel and react to pain depends on what’s causing it, as well as many personal factors. People seeking pain treatments and those seeking acupuncture and Chinese stress medicines from our Geelong clinic make up a large proportion of our patients.

While usually pain is not a condition in itself, but rather an indication/symptom of a problem somewhere in the body, if dysfunctional it can become a disease in its own right.

Pain is the most common reason that people seek medical help and can come in many forms. Usually, the location of the pain within the body corresponds with the location of the problem it is indicating, however, cases in which pain is experienced in a location away from the problem also exist, i.e. leg pain resulting from a prolapsed disk pushing on a nerve in the back. Pain can affect any part of your body.

Some of the most common forms of pain are:

Acute versus chronic pain

There are two major categories of pain. Pain can be short-term (acute) or long-term (chronic).

Acute pain

Acute pain is pain lasting less than three months and occurs following surgery or trauma or other conditions. One third of people do not know what causes their pain. Although it usually improves as the body heals, in some cases, it may not.

Chronic pain

Chronic pain is pain that lasts beyond three months, the time needed for issues to heal following surgery or trauma or other conditions. It is often associated with an increased pain experience, which may spread beyond the area of injury into surrounding tissue or nerves. It can also exist without a clear reason at all.

Pain according to Chinese medicine

The following simple yet profound statement sums up the very essence of the Chinese medical view of pain:

This means that, as long as qi (vital energy) and blood circulate freely and smoothly without hindrance or obstruction, there is no pain in the body. However, if, due to any reason, the flow of qi and blood is hindered, blocked, obstructed, or insufficient flow, then there will be pain.

Please watch this video for an analogy

There are two main causes of the lack of free flow of the qi and blood, either:

  1. OBSTRUCTION: something is blocking or obstructing the flow of qi and blood through the channels and vessels (Emotions/ Injury/ Structural change/ Food obstruction/ Environmental stresses (Wind, cold, heat and damp) or,
  2. LACK OF NOURISHMENT: there is insufficient qi and blood to maintain smooth and free flow (Old age/ Chronic disease/ Blood loss/ Organ damage or decreased functioning/ overuse or overworked
Causes Of Pain
Main causes and influence factors of pain from Chinese medicine view.

All pain, no matter what its modern Western medical diagnosis, is considered by Chinese medicine as a problem with free flow of qi and blood.
The flow of qi and blood can become inhibited in any and every area of the body: the internal organs, the muscles, the head, the lower back, and the extremities and joints.

Thus, in Chinese medicine, pain is the felt experience of the inability of the body to keep up with the maintenance of the body, be this supplying adequate nutrition/energy, regeneration of injured body parts/organs, replenishing vital cellular products, toxin processing and waste removal to maintain proper operation of the body.

In Chinese medicine, all pain disturbs the mind. This explains why people with pain often suffer from anxiety, depression and / or poor sleep.

Our approaches to pain

The basic principle of treatment in Chinese medicine is to first calm the mind, then restore the flow of Qi.

In Chinese medicine, two patients with the same Western medical disease may receive radically different Chinese medicine treatment because the root cause of their disease is different. This means that every patient in Chinese medicine is given an individualised treatment based on the cause and nature of their particular pattern of disharmony.

We will identify the pattern from Chinese medicine, contributing factors, such as sleep, anxiety, and develop a treatment plan incorporating acupuncture, auricular acupressure and/or herbal medicine. We will also advise you on self-management approaches so that you could help yourself in improving pain. We communicate with other health professionals who also help you so that you have a supporting network.

Acupuncture for Pain Management – What research says

There is considerable evidence of acupuncture for acute and chronic pain.

For acute pain, a 2017 systematic review found that acupuncture was more effective than both sham needling and injection with painkillers.

For chronic pain, in 2007 the largest study of its kind to date, 454,920 patients were treated with acupuncture for headache, low back pain, and/or osteoarthritis. Effectiveness was rated as marked or moderate in 76% of cases.

In a two-year retroactive survey published in 2016 of over 89,000 patients, 93% of patients said that their acupuncturist had been successful in treating their musculoskeletal pain.

Another 2017 study paper titled ‘Acupuncture for Chronic Pain: an Update and Critical Overview’ concluded that “mounting evidence supports the effectiveness of acupuncture to treat chronic low back, neck, shoulder, and knee pain, as well as headaches. Also, additional data emerging supports the use of acupuncture as an adjunct or alternative to opioids, and in perioperative settings.

Two recent 2016, 2017 systematic reviews reported positive results of acupuncture in the relief of cancer-related pain. A 2015 systematic review and meta-analysis suggested that acupuncture was useful in decreasing postoperative pain.

Please also check out Dr Zhen Zheng’s research on acupuncture for:

Geelong Chinese Medical Clinic provides a wide range of health treatments including help with sleep problems, digestion issues and allergies and also provides Chinese women’s health and fertility medicines for Geelong and district women


What we treat: Stress & Emotional Issues

SEO Friendly Title: Stress & emotional issues treatment, Geelong

How Chinese medicine understands stress, emotion and health

Stress is a common phenomenon with life. Emotional disturbance is our common reaction to stress. Chinese medicine understands emotions are one of the leading causes of health issues and diseases and our practitioners provide a variety of treatments for stress and emotional issues, including Chinese medicine in Geelong for women’s health and fertility problems.

Some causes of diseases, such as weather change,  flu virus or food poisoning for example, can be avoided by taking preventative measures and keeping away from those causes. Emotion, however, is with you and within you  24/7, and it directly impacts on your body function.  You might notice that your head hurts when you face a conflicting situation; you have shortness of breath when feeling sad;  you have poor appetite or loss of sleep when you are worried about something. Those physical discomforts explain the close integration between body and mind and emotion.

Similarly, a dysfunctional body could also evoke an emotional response. Pain could lead to depression and poor sleep is often associated with anxiety, which is why the Chinese medicine and treatment for sleep problems at our Geelong clinic incorporates a holistic all-of-body approach.

Chinese medicine sees the body and mind as one, inseparable, and that each affects the other. The symbiosis between body and mind is integral to how we approach the treatment of emotional issues and stress at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic.

Approaches to stress and emotional issues at our Geelong clinic

Because of the close interaction between mind and body, Chinese medicine treats both the body and mind to address stress and emotional issues.

We will treat the impact of emotions on your body as well as calm your mind to produce therapeutic effects.  We will work with other health practitioners, such as your psychologist, psychiatrist or GP, to help you. The ultimate goal is to help you regain the sense of peace and wellbeing to produce long-term results.

Based on Chinese medicine diagnosis, our practitioners in Geelong use acupuncture treatments to:

Chinese herbal medicine is also used to strengthen the results. We will provide “take home” treatments so that you can continue with the treatment effects and gain some sense of control. We will also provide advice on lifestyle changes to enable you to self-manage for long-term results.

Common emotional issues we treat

Common physical symptoms associated with stress and emotions

Please contact our clinic for a range of Chinese medicine treatments, including resolving sleep problems and women’s health and fertility treatments in Geelong.


What we treat: Women’s Health & Fertility

SEO Friendly Title: Women's health & Chinese fertility medicine, Geelong

How Chinese medicine understands women’s health

A woman’s body goes through delicate changes throughout its lifetime, from the onset of first menstrual period to menopause and our clinic places strong emphasis on the provision of Chinese women’s health and fertility medicine for Geelong and district women. From Chinese medicine’s point of view, women’s reproduction relies on kidney “Jing” or essence, as well as coordinated organs functioning. We also believe women’s physiology is dominated by blood.

In women, blood is not only the source of periods but also of fertility, conception, pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding. Menstruation period is an indicator of women’s general health. It is very important that menstruation is punctuated with moderate amount of blood as it reflects good Qi (energy) and blood circulation.

Unhealthy lifestyle, diet and stress can all play a big role in changing women’s dynamic balance, causing symptoms physically and mentally. Most women had those episodes when their periods were delayed or stopped for one or more months after an emotionally or physically stressful time.

Feature of women’s health issues

Women's Health
  1. Physical and mental symptoms are shown together. For example, period pain is usually associated with emotional changes and hot flushes during menopause will lead to poor sleep and anxiety. In Chinese Medicine, we believe body and mind are interacted, we cannot ignore one and only treat the other.
  2. Symptoms will reoccur or get worse around period time. You may find your eczema flares up or sleep quality is even worse right before period comes.

Our approach to women’s health and fertility issues

We usually combine Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture at our Geelong clinic to treat women’s health problems. Diet and lifestyle change are also provided. We treat body and mind as one during treatment as they cannot be separated.

Regulating period circles is our priority. For fertility issues, a good period circle reflects balanced hormonal levels and it also leads to proper timing of ovulation. Generally, a long menstruation circle associates with a delayed ovulation, and a short circle comes with an earlier ovulation.
Eliminating associated symptoms is also very important. Our goal is to get you through circles without much pain and suffering.

Common women’s health problems we see include:

Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic provides a range of treatments and Chinese herbal medicines in Geelong, including cupping and moxibustion, needle-free acupuncture, treatments for digestion issues and Chinese medicine and treatments for sleep problems.


What we treat: Sleep Problems

SEO Friendly Title: Chinese treatments for sleep problems, Geelong

Sleep problems and Chinese medicine

What are the symptoms?

The following symptoms can be a sign you do not sleep well or are suffering from a lack of sleep:

Sleep is closely related to main parts of our lives. In the long-term, sleep deprivation can have a serious impact on mental acuity and physical health. Poor sleep is linked with many health problems, including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease risk, weight gain and generally weakened immunity.

If you have experienced any of the above symptoms, consult Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic about different natural approaches to improve sleeping and to discuss our range of preventative Chinese medicine for Geelong and district patients.

Causes of sleep problems

In Chinese medicine, sleep is a representation of balanced yin and yang, and a calm mind. One can only fall asleep at night if they are generally calm in their mind during the day and prior to sleep.

More than 50 percent of patients we see at the Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic experience some sleeping problems, but only 20 percent come specifically to have treatment for sleep.

There are multiple causes responsible for sleep problems, including:

Chinese medicine treatment approaches

Sleep hygiene

Sleep hygiene is a must for a good sleep. To learn about sleep hygiene, please check this site from the Victorian Government.

Contact our clinic to discuss a range of traditional Chinese medicines and treatments including needle-free acupuncture, Qi Gong, help with women’s health and fertility problems, help with stress and emotional issues and our Chinese herbal medicines in Geelong.


What we treat: Prevention, Energy & Well-being

SEO Friendly Title: Prevention in Chinese medicine

While in general modern people think of healthcare and medicine as something for when you are unwell, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is a medicine that holds “prevention is better than cure and health promotion is the best method for prolonging one’s own life”.

TCM views health as the balanced condition of a person’s mind, body and spirit, usually meaning to be free from illness, stress, injury or pain.

So in TCM, health is ‘life in balance’. This is demonstrated in the Daoist concept of yin and yang, represented by the tai ji or yin yang symbol.

Can TCM (traditional Chinese medicine) be used as preventative medicine?

Explaining the TCM value of health promotion and disease prevention methods is like comparing the human body to a car engine – it has specific functions that require regular maintenance, care and attention. In the TCM view, vital energy (Qi) flows throughout the body and when it gets blocked or becomes stagnant, health issues can arise.

Receiving regular, or semi-regular TCM treatments and following TCM principles helps provide the necessary support the body needs to stay at optimum operating levels. This also aims to address any issues before they become a bigger problem.

Causes of ill health / disease

According to TCM theory, disease can be caused by a combination of:

Identifying warning signs

The body’s ability to respond to these disturbances relies on a balanced and healthy capacity. If a person suffers any amount of these disorders over time, eventually it will lead to a disturbance or imbalance of Qi, which compromise the body-mind-spirit of the person and leaves them open to disease.

However the body’s warning system is to exhibit symptoms which signal that it has somehow fallen out of balance. These start as vague discomforts and intermittent low-level symptoms, such as:

These symptoms may increase in intensity and eventually become an identifiable illness if ignored.

Health promotion and disease prevention methods

In TCM, good health is quite similar to what your mother has been telling you for as long as you can remember! Harmony and balance in every aspect of life is the key to health.

Where the body’s balance is showing signs of being disturbed, the main goal of TCM is to restore balance by influencing the many forms of the body’s Qi using direct and indirect methods reflecting TCM theories, including:

If identified and treated early, imbalances are much more easily restored than long-standing issues. Please contact our clinic for more information, treatments and Chinese herbal medicines in Geelong.


What we treat: Digestion Problems

SEO Friendly Title: Geelong Chinese medicine to aid digestive problems

In Chinese medicine, good gut health and digestion contributes to overall good health, contentment, hardiness and happiness. While good digestion aids optimum body function, digestion problems can lead to a range of health concerns, as well as affecting everyday life and leading to feelings of melancholy.

If you frequently suffer from stomach aches, bowel troubles or find that certain foods cause indigestion, we at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic can help identify the underlying cause and provide natural remedies. The Chinese acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicines at our Geelong clinic can help relieve symptoms of poor digestion and boost digestive function.

Traditional Chinese medicine takes a holistic approach to treating digestive problems, looking closely at the way your digestive network functions.

If there is an imbalance or issue in any one of your organs, the entire network becomes disrupted.

Common signs that can indicate digestive issues in Chinese medicine

A Chinese medicine practitioner knows how to find the issue. There are common signs that suggest poor digestive health, including:

Hair and nail health

Poor nail health can indicate an inability to absorb and digest nutrients from food.

Tongue and mouth

The appearance of different sections of the tongue is directly linked to organs in the digestive network. The colour, shape and size of the tongue can tell a Chinese medicine practitioner important information about the function of particular organs, while ulcerations, coatings on the tongue and visibility of blood vessels can reveal information about digestion and absorption in the digestive tract, as well as indicate food intolerances.

Choosing the right herbs and foods for improved digestion

In Chinese medicine, a healthy and balanced diet is vital for good gut health – and promotes overall well-being, optimism and clarity. Over-eating, under-eating or eating foods with low nutritional value leads to Qi Stagnation and Food Accumulation and feelings of hunger or discomfit after eating.

Chinese herbs and our Geelong acupuncture treatments can relieve a wide range of digestion problems and discomfort, including:

To try and prevent digestive issues in the first place, it’s important to choose a healthy diet. A healthy diet changes depending on each person, and also incorporates lifestyle decisions. Our Chinese medical practitioners can recommend tips to improve gut health and boost digestion, including:


What we treat: Allergies & Other Conditions

SEO Friendly Title: Geelong Chinese medicine for allergies

How Chinese Medicine understand allergies

In Chinese medicine, there are two factors for sickness:

Symptoms of sickness are a result of the body fighting against the external pathogens. If the body is healthy and strong, a person might experience mild symptoms or not get sick at all. However, if the body is not strong enough or the pathogen is vicious, symptoms can be very severe.

Allergic reactions are caused by the competitive onset of similar symptoms. They are allergen-induced, seasonal or not seasonal. In Chinese medicine, an allergy is a chronic condition that indicates the body is fighting against pathogen(s), but not strong enough to completely rid it from the body.

Types of allergens

Allergens are found in a variety of sources. Common allergens include:

Allergic reactions can be triggered by any form of contact with the human body, including breathing and inhaling, consuming food or drinks and direct contact with any part of the body. Symptoms can include rashes, hives, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, difficulty breathing, dizziness and some more serious conditions.

Hay fever (Allergic Rhinitis) in Chinese medicine

Hay fever refers to a complex of symptoms including sneezing, itchy eyes and nose, nasal congestion and runny nose in response to allergens such as pollen and dust.

In Chinese medicine, lungs are the primary organs for breathing. When lung Qi is insufficient, the lungs fail to expel external pathogens. That’s why a lot of people find their hay fever symptoms are worse when they also suffer from some other health problems, such as low energy and poor digestion.

Our approach in treating hay fever

There are two aspects involved in treating hay fever; reducing exposure to pathogens and minimising signs and symptoms. Keeping away from allergens is an effective way to prevent hay fever. Keeping windows and door closed during hay fever season, washing hands and face after going to the garden and tumble drying your clothes can reduce your exposure to pollens and dust.

We use acupuncture to reduce symptoms such as itchy eyes, nose and throat, blocked and runny nose and sneezing. We also give Chinese herbal medicines to moderate immunity and strengthen the lungs, to treat the root of the problem.

During non-hay fever season, it is necessary to strengthen the body’s defensive Qi, and improve constitution.


Information: What to expect at your appointment

SEO Friendly Title: What to expect at your Geelong Chinese Medicine appointment

What To Expect?

Your first appointment will be 60 minutes, including a 30-minute consultation and 30-minute treatment session (if you have acupuncture treatment). This will enable us to establish a solid history and have a good understanding of your condition.

Follow up appointment will be 30 minutes in most case and can be 45 minutes in other cases.

Your First Appointment

Once you make your first appointment, prior to your first visit, you may want to write down your health history, including surgeries, injuries, allergies and medications you are on. Please also write down how the current problem was developed and how it has been investigated and treated. Please bring the information to your first appointment.

Recommendations For Your Acupuncture Appointments

We recommend you wear comfortable clothes that roll up to knees and elbows, or are easily removable.
Do not come for acupuncture treatments on an empty stomach / too full a stomach or having consumed drugs or alcohol.

Consultation And Treatment

Chinese medicine or acupuncture consultation inquires many aspects of your life, such as sleeping patterns, digestion, emotional state, diet, and lifestyle. Unique to Chinese medicine diagnosis, your tongue and pulse may be examined, and areas of concern may be palpated.

Once a Chinese medicine diagnosis is made, we will develop the treatment plan with you that is most suitable to your situation. The treatment could be acupuncture alone, herbal medicine alone or a combination of both.

Please feel free to raise any questions or concerns at any time.

Prognosis, Follow Up Consultation And Frequency Of Treatment

The prognosis, and the amount and frequency of your treatment depend largely on the severity of your health condition and how long it has been a problem.

Generally 1-2 acupuncture treatment sessions per week for 3-4 weeks are required to achieve a satisfactory result for acute problems. For chronic problems, it often requires weekly or fortnightly treatment over some months for progressive results.

With Chinese herbal medicine, formulas to restore chronic conditions may require weeks or months of use, whereas formulas for acute colds, cough or digestive problem can show positive results within a few days.

While you may gain immediate benefits even after one treatment, progress in health conditions is usually measured over a course of treatments, which involves 4-10 treatment sessions. This is done to ensure:

Follow up appointment is often 30 minutes including a short consultation to check any arising issues and treatment.


Information: Insurance Cover

SEO Friendly Title: Insurance Cover

Acupuncture is covered by

Please note we charge a discounts fee to patients whose treatment is covered by Worksafe or TAC. You can claim part of the fee back from them.

Chinese herbal medicine consultation and herbs are covered by some private health insurance companies. Please check your cover schedule.


Services: Acupuncture

SEO Friendly Title: Acupuncture treatment in Geelong

Acupuncture at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic follows well-known and popular traditional Chinese techniques involving the insertion of fine needles into the meridians of patients’ bodies. One of our most popular treatment options, acupuncture complements the range of therapies and Chinese herbal medicine at our Geelong clinic.

Acupuncture has its origins in China about 100 BC and involves stimulating body walls such as skin and muscle to produce therapeutic effects. Acupuncture can help a wide range of conditions, ranging from acute and chronic pain through to respiratory, skin and gastric problems.

Understanding acupuncture

To help understand acupuncture, imagine your body is a living city comprising organic highways and byways. When your city’s roads and paths are clear and traffic unimpeded, everything flows smoothly and easily. However, if there is a breakdown on any of those thoroughfares, the traffic flow becomes compromised and a traffic jam eventuates. If the breakdown remains uncleared, the traffic jam becomes worse and its effect on the city – your body – increases.

In your body, the roads and pathways are known as meridians, and the traffic along those meridians is an energy flow known as chi. Suffer an injury and the consequential response of your body, such as a muscle spasming or tightening, can create a traffic jam and block the chi flow.

Chinese acupuncture in Geelong

Acupuncture treatment at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic aims to restore the chi flow and diminish the effect of the injury or illness. Our practitioners insert acupuncture needles into the affected area to help clear the traffic jam but will also insert needles into other areas to divert traffic away from the jam and help restore the chi flow.

Acupuncture has been proven to be effective for a number of pain and non-pain conditions common in primary care, and acupuncture for pain treatment at our Geelong clinic regularly brings relief to clients. We treat patients with a wide variety of complaints such as:

Evidence supports acupuncture’s benefit for anxiety, depression, insomnia, ulcerative colitis and it provides the opportunity for non-drug therapies for a number of health conditions. Acupuncture at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic can be easily integrated into multidisciplinary management of chronic conditions.

Please watch the video of our clinic’s Geelong acupuncture practitioner and RMIT University academic Dr Zhen Zheng explains how acupuncture treatment works.

Well-trained and highly experienced practitioners provide acupuncture at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic and patients should experience minimal discomfort during treatment.

Other acupuncture treatments

While traditional Chinese acupuncture is a popular and effective treatment, our clinic also offers laser and electrical acupuncture in Geelong for those who have a fear of needles.

Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic practitioners are also qualified to provide point injection treatments in which saline can be injected into acupuncture points to enhance therapeutic effect. We also provide scalp acupuncture, hand and foot acupuncture, wrist and ankle acupuncture, and micro-system acupuncture.

We encourage you to contact us to make an inquiry about our acupuncture treatment or other Chinese therapies such as cupping and moxibustion, Qigong and Chinese herbal medicine at our Geelong clinic.


Services: Needle-Free Acupuncture

SEO Friendly Title: Laser, electrical & other needle-free acupuncture, Geelong

Needle-free acupuncture and other techniques

As well as offering traditional Chinese acupuncture at our Geelong clinic, our practitioners also provide a range of needle-free treatments, including electrical acupuncture and laser acupuncture. Needle-free acupuncture is a popular and effective choice of treatment for those who are afraid of needles and complements the range of traditional Chinese medicine at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic.

Electrical acupuncture

Also known as electro acupuncture, electrical acupuncture involves the use of weak electrical stimulation to enhance therapeutic effects. It has been proven to be particularly effective for painful conditions.

Laser acupuncture

This is another form of needle-free acupuncture and involves the use of low-power laser beams on acupuncture points in the body. Laser acupuncture has proven effectiveness for a wide range of conditions.

Ear (Auricular) acupressure

This is your “take away” treatment. We tape ear seeds onto your ear. The seeds can be in place for up to one week. This will enhance and prolong the effect of acupuncture.

Whether it’s illness, disease, discomfort or pain, Chinese medicine in Geelong is our expertise. Please contact Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic to find out more about our range of services and treatments or to book an appointment.

Non-invasive Chinese medicine

At Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, we offer various non-invasive treatments. Each treatment is based on a person’s unique symptoms and needs. We believe in taking a holistic approach to your health, combining the use of Chinese herbs and treatments to restore your body’s natural harmony and promote overall well-being.

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) focuses on your mind-body-spirit connection. All aspects must be synchronised and working in harmony for optimal health and body function. There are many different treatment options available to help restore various functions of the mind and body, including a range of non-invasive acupuncture and related therapies.

Gua Sha

Commonly used to treat muscle pain and tension, gua sha is an alternative massage therapy that involves scraping skin to increase blood flow and boost circulation.

In traditional Chinese medicine, the uninterrupted flow of Qi through the body is vital for health and wellness. Gua sha addresses stagnant Qi to reduce inflammation and promote healing.


Services: Chinese Herbal Medicine

SEO Friendly Title: Chinese herbal medicine, Geelong

Based on principles dating back more than 5000 years, the Chinese herbal medicine at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic has stood the test of time. As much about illness prevention as it is treatment – Chinese medicine involves practitioners taking a personalised approach to the prescription, preparation and dispensing of medicines specifically tailored to individuals and their health.

Chinese medicine adopts the premise that no two people have the same physiology and therefore will not display precisely the same symptoms for illnesses and diseases. Consequently each individual might require a different prescription of Chinese medicine even though they might have the same health condition as others.

The clinicians at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic will prepare and recommend Chinese herbal medicines suited to each person’s unique needs, including

What is Chinese herbal medicine?

Chinese herbal medicine refers to plants, animals and minerals grown in the natural world or processed from natural products. The majority of medicines are plants, which is why we generally call them herbal medicine. In the long history of Chinese medicine practise, there are over 3000 individual herbs listed in the Chinese Medicine literatures, and about 200 to 300 of them are commonly used in today’s practise.

How does Chinese herbal Medicine work?

Chinese herbal medicine is applied based on Chinese medicine theory – including Yin and Yang theory, five element theory, Qi, Blood and water metabolism theory – to strengthen weaknesses and purge excesses, warm the Yang and reinforce the Yin to balance out the body.

Herbs grow in different environments and each has a different taste and property. In Chinese medicine, herbs are used according to taste and property.

For example, ginseng grows in a cool environment and has a sweet taste. It is used to warm up the body and reinforce the weakness for people recovering from bad injuries and diseases. Dandelion, a very common weed growing in our backyard, has a bitter taste and it grows very well in warm seasons. Dandelion is cooling and purging, used in treating infection, inflammation and abscess and detoxifying the liver and stomach.

In practise, a formula (a group of herbs) is usually given instead of an individual herb on its own to maximise the treatment effect.

Chinese medicine is an individualised medicine. People with different diseases can be given the same herbs, while different herbs can be prescribed to treat the same health issue in different people.

What can Chinese herbal medicine treat?

Chinese herbal medicine can help improve a wide range of health problems, from sleep problems to digestive issues, stress and hay fever and other allergies. At Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, we believe in using Chinese herbal medicine to relieve sufferings as well as improve overall health and well-being in order to prevent the imbalances in the body that lead to disease and other health concerns.

A peaceful mind, body and spirit is the binding principle of Chinese medicine. If there is even a small imbalance in any part of the body, it can disrupt the flow of energy, resulting in pain or sickness.

The Chinese medicine practice focuses on patterns of signs and symptoms and the mechanisms behind these symptoms – which is the dynamic balance of Yin and Yang, Blood and Qi movement as well as the visceral organs.

Using a combination of Chinese herbal medicine and acupuncture, our practitioners help restore your body to optimum function, as well as reduce pain and other symptoms of disease, sickness and other health concerns.

What to expect on a Chinese medicine consultation

At Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, a Chinese medicine consultation generally takes about half an hour. We need to know about your very detailed health history as well as your general health conditions. We also read your tongue and pulse to get a whole picture of your body and then make an individualised formula to rebalance it. We have both powder herbs and patent herbal pills to suit the individual need.


Services: Cupping & Moxibustion

SEO Friendly Title: Cupping and moxibustion, Geelong

Cupping Therapy

What is cupping?

Cupping is a long-practised treatment used in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). Cupping involves placing vacuum cups on the skin to create suction. This pressure is used to stretch skin, tissue and tight muscles upward. The suction assists healing by relieving muscle tension, increasing blood circulation, and with it the flow of “qi” in the body (Qi is a Chinese word meaning life force).

Cupping is often practised alongside acupuncture but can also be used as a treatment in its own right.

Cupping is not painful, however it can leave temporary reddish-purple patches on the skin that look like bruises, especially if there is an injury or energetic blockage under the area that was cupped. The discoloration on the skin shows there has been movement or change in the circulation of blood in the treated areas. Although these marks resemble bruises, the muscles are not injured. The skin discoloration can last from a few days to a couple of weeks, but is rarely painful.

Types of cupping

Traditionally, cups were made from animal horn or bamboo, and later on from ceramics. Modern cups for vacuum cupping include glass, plastic, rubber and silicon; all with various ways for removing the air inside the cups and creating a vacuum, such as fire, hand pump, balloon or compression. There are two main methods of dry cupping (which is a suction-only method) used at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic:

What conditions is cupping used for?

Cupping has long been used to treat a wide variety of conditions. While cupping can be especially effective at easing muscle aches and pains, the cups can also be applied to major acupressure points, influencing the treatment of conditions commonly treated with acupuncture. A 2012 review of cupping therapy found that cupping therapy may help with a variety of conditions, but acknowledged more high-quality studies were needed to assess the true effectiveness of cupping.

A review of cupping therapy clinical trials showed cupping may help in certain conditions under the following areas:

While considered relatively safe if applied by appropriately qualified practitioners, cupping is a specialist technique and is contraindicated in certain cases. It is therefore very important to visit AHPRA-registered practitioners. All practitioners at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic are registered with AHPRA and are highly experienced in applying cupping. Based on your condition and preference, we will choose the best cupping method for you.

Moxibustion

Moxibustion is a form of heat therapy, as Chinese medicine understands some presentations are cold in nature, whereas others are hot. Moxibustion uses a heat generating herb to produce warmth. There are a number of forms of this therapy.

TDP Infrared Heating

This is the modern form of moxibustion to produce warmth. This therapy is effective for any presentations that Chinese medicine considers with a cold nature. This is different from commonly used heat packs.


Services: Lifestyle, Dietary & Exercise Advice

SEO Friendly Title: Lifestyle, dietary & exercise advice

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is based on the view that the body is interconnected. Due to this interconnectedness, all symptoms are related. For example, muscle tension could be related to diet, sleep, stress, emotion or other factors. It is an imbalance of these lifestyle factors that is the cause of all health complaints. Therefore it is the regular everyday things that most help maintain this ‘balance’ (Yin, Yang) or health of the body. These lifestyle areas can easily be understood as the way the human body ‘recharges’, but Chinese medicine principles about this idea can seem slightly different to what we’re used to.

These basics of a healthy lifestyle are:

Diet

While we are bombarded with many different and often-changing points of view about a healthy diet, food affects our health much more than the medicine we take. In Chinese medicine, diet is a key factor in maintaining health or recovering from illness.

Chinese medicine classifies food according to its energetic effects (such as warming and nourishing / cooling and eliminating) rather than just its nutritional parts. Patients are always advised to eat seasonal, unprocessed foods where possible and include multiple colours and flavours of a variety of healthy foods according to their individual constitution, ability to digest, and need for building certain deficiencies or decreasing an unwanted excess of “sometimes foods” (highly processed/ high sugar/ fats or toxic e.g. alcohol).

Due to this some foods may be seen as beneficial for some patients but unfavourable for others.

Exercise

Moderate exercise (not too much and not too little) is an important factor, as physical activities are beneficial to the flow of Qi (energy) and blood, helping to maintain the body. Yoga, Tai Chi and Qi Gong are commonly recommended along with other exercises like swimming, walking, jogging and going to the gym.

TCM advises different types of exercise based on the individual patient’s constitution. Sometimes certain exercises should be avoided if too strenuous for recently ill or injured patients, and replaced with more suitable exercises like walking or Qi Gong.

Adequate rest and relaxation

Another essential, easy-to-understand principle is getting regular adequate sleep. Being sleep-deprived or having disturbed sleep patterns – whether actual sleep difficulties, shift work, or constant self-inflicted late nights – can weaken the body’s self-maintenance abilities, impact everyday function and can eventually cause illness.

Proper rest restores the body and mind, helping to maintain health and strengthen the body’s ability to resist disease. A balance between work, exercise, play and rest is something everyone needs. TCM principles also encourage stress reduction with relaxation through hobbies; appropriate socialising, exercise, and quality self-time help maintain balance.

Finally, TCM recommends conserving energy through understanding seasonal influences on body rhythms by modifying levels of activity appropriately (e.g. being more active in warmer months, but less active and more protective against exposure to weather in winter).

Good mental attitude

While TCM places a high value on diet and nutrition, it is also important to note “You are what you think.”

In TCM, specific emotions relate to specific organ systems. Negative emotions can directly impact the way an organ functions (especially digestion). Emotions like fear, anger, constant worry and overthinking are particularly disruptive if you experience them constantly. This is like a junk food diet for the mind. These affect your body’s ability to maintain balance. Mental stress-reduction through harmonious body, mind, and spirit activities like yoga, Qi Gong, meditation, and deep breathing exercises have long been used to help maintain a positive mindset.

Remember, in TCM, prevention is key. Making appropriate lifestyle choices means making good choices every day that enhance health and help prevent disease. Many health factors are in our individual control, through quality food choices, moderate exercise, restorative sleep, positive mindset, minimising toxins and stress management.

Research demonstrates that many chronic diseases are largely caused by lifestyle choices and habits. The important principle of preventive health care is that one can use lifestyle to bring about balance and health.

For further reading:

Good Life Habits According to Chinese Medicine – Shen-Nong


Services: Qigong

SEO Friendly Title: Qigong at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic

Qi Character
Qi

A literal translation of the Chinese character Qi is air or breath. It is the energy that circulates within the body.  Gong is the term used for any study or training which requires a lot of energy and time, work or self-discipline, or arts. Thus Qigong is arts of Qi, and a method to build up Qi.

It is known that the beginnings of the Chinese art of Qigong have a history that goes back thousands of years, though only a few historical documents remain today.

Qigong practices are designed to guide and induce the free flow of energy/ Qi throughout the body via integrated physical movement, mental cultivation and regulated breathing. These exercises once learnt can also bring about increased muscular efficiency, balance and coordination, improved breathing and blood flow, greater flexibility, a calm mind and improved immune system.

In China for many hundreds of years, many different practices of Qigong have arisen but they all come from the same fundamental theories based on the observation of nature.

In traditional Chinese medicine the flow of energy Qi along channels or meridians in the body is viewed as central to a person’s health and wellbeing, with illness being attributed to restricted or blocked Qi flow within the body. This concept provides the basis for acupuncture and Qigong.

Qigong emphasizes the cultivation of health through the removal of blockages in the mind and body. As observed by the ancient Chinese, running water never turns stale and a door hinge never gets worm eaten.

Paul teaches Qigong through Geelong City Yoga with Geelong psychologist Helen Handsjuk on Wednesday AM and through Geelong West Neighbourhood House on Thursday evening.

What is the difference between Tai Chi and Qigong?

Qigong is a training system that helps to generate a smooth flow of Qi (internal energy) inside the body and then circulate it through the entire body. Qigong practices may differ through their focuses, medical/health promotion, martial or even spiritual.

During the Song dynasty (960-1279 A.D.), a Daoist named Chang San-Feng is believed to have created a martial art Taijiquan (Tai Chi Chuan), which means ‘grand ultimate fist’. Tai Chi shares Qigong internal Qi/energy principles because it emphasizes on working with qi.

 

When practiced slowly, Tai Chi is a form of Qigong (energy work) with Qigong health benefits, but Tai Chi is also a martial art. In every movement of Tai Chi, you can find a martial arts application that can be used for self-defence. Some forms of Qigong do promote physical characteristics useful for martial arts, but in comparison, Qigong lacks the attack and defence principles contained in the Tai Chi postures. So, to sum up, Qigong & Tai Chi work off the same principles. Tai Chi just expresses the ability to cultivate, circulate and harmonize Qi in relation to martial arts.

What are the health benefits of Qi Gong and Tai Chi?

While, there are over 500 research studies on qigong, and over 1800 studies on tai chi, there are many challenges and complexities in studying and proving benefits of such practices, but the evidence for the health benefits of Qigong and Tai Chi is encouraging.

Here are some of the benefits of Tai Chi and Qigong as indicated through clinical trial evidence.

A video demonstration of the Qigong movements by Master Liu De Ming,

 


Posts

Taiji Qigong Shibashi -18 easy movements to support your own Health from home

The Taiji (Tai Chi) Qigong Shibashi (18 movement)

is a modern Qigong form combining elements from the Yang form Taiji and more traditional breathing and movement exercises from Qigong. The routine combines slow, deliberate movements, meditation, and breathing exercises and can be done in one place (standing or seated). It is an excellent gentle exercise activity for beginners and people with health conditions.

A link is provided below for a follow-along video demonstration of Shibashi (filmed in mirror image by Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic’s registered acupuncturist & herbalist and qualified Qigong instructor Paul Burns )

While the routines are not high intensity they are designed to help:

One of the best features of Tai Chi and Qigong is that they can be adapted to fit just about any fitness level. Yes, you can modify/ shorten repetitions or not do the movements if they are not suited to your body/ injury. While the breathing & movement coordination is not described in the video, just go with what feels natural such as inhale on the lift / expand movements and exhale on the body contract / descend movements (Please stop if at any time you feel dizzy). As a beginner don’t stress yourself co-ordinating the breathing and movements, and always return to natural breathing if needed. The gentle, low-impact flowing movements are easy on the joints. You can even do the movements seated. Simply doing the gestures as a gentle exercise will bring about positive results, but it becomes more of Qigong when the person practicing becomes more actively aware of the mind and breath with the movements.

But check with your doctor first if you have any conditions such as:

To see the follow along online video of the Taiji Qigong Shibashi click this link Taiji Qigong Shibashi


Spring cleaning our body

Spring is here. Today Geelong is nicely warm, a perfect spring day.

Plum Blosom Spring In Coburg

You might have dusted your house, weeded your garden to welcome the spring. This morning my Qi Gong instructor reminded us to also spring clean our body. His comments inspire me to write this blog.

From Chinese medicine point of view, Spring is the time for growth and is dominated by wind. We are part of the nature. The change of seasons also brings changes in us. The arrival of spring might make you wanting to be outdoors, and to be active. Those are positive aspects.  The energy however that encourages growth also stirs up what is in dormant, like the hurricane bringing up dust and everything in its path.

 

 

So how do we know if we have issues need to be “spring cleaned”? Here are a few signs.

So how do we spring clean our body?

In Chinese medicine, mind and body are closely linked, via Qi. That is how emotional issues are manifested through our body, and disturbance in our body can cause disturbed mind.

Canada From Yan Spring

So spring cleaning the body is to spring clean the Qi to help your body reach a balanced state. Here are a few strategies:

When the house is dusted, garden is weeded, it is time to declutter our body.


10 tips to avoid the impact of coldness when work from home

Nowadays, many of us work or study from home. Prolonged stay in a cold room has the similar effect on our body as being in a cold outdoor environment. Coldness can damage vitality of our Qi. When the vitality is impacted, we feel fatigue, sleepy, hungry or pain or stiffness in some parts of your body. We may or may not feel the cold. More and more people come to our Chinese medicine clinic in Geelong for those signs and symptoms.

Work From Home
Work From Home

There are two guiding principles to prevent your body from being harmed by the coldness.

Outdoors in a winter is an obvious cold situation. This is not the only time when one is exposed to the coldness. Many of us work or study from home. Most of the Australian houses are not well insulated, so indoors can be cold. Sitting at the desk or in front of a computer for too long allows coldness to impact on us. In summer, coldness also happens as conditioners blow out cool air constantly.

 

 

Here are TEN tips to prevent coldness from impacting on you

Stay warm, staysafe, and stay well.


Stay healthy during a pandemic: The understanding of Righteous Qi (Zheng Qi, protect, defend and support)

We are facing a pandemic. As of 1 April 2020, the city of Great Geelong has 43 cases tested positive for COVID-19. When facing the same viruses or pandemic, some people are affected badly whereas others do not suffer from many signs and symptoms. A healthy body system is often the reason behind. The people are affected the most b COIVD-19 are the older people over 70 years, people who have pre-existing conditions, such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes, or people’s immunity is comprised due to chemotherapies, organ transplants etc.

In Chinese medicine, disease occurrence is the result of the fight between Righteous energy, or factors (Zheng Qi) that protect and support us to heal, and Evil energy or factors (Xie  Qi) that try to invade our body and conquer us. When Righteous Qi is strong, one may be able to prevent the Evil Qi entering into the body or minimise the impact of Evil Qi. Righteous Qi is not simply equal to Immunity. The fight between Righteous Qi and Evil Qi is similar to the fight between Obi – Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader.

To ensure we are healthy, in particularly during a pandemic, it is essential we maintain strong Righteous (Zheng) Qi. Knowing the factors impacting on Zheng Qi will help us develop good strategies.

What We Treat
The Righteous Qi is like those trees, protecting and supporitng

We will discuss each factor and what we can do to strengthen our Righteous Qi (Zheng Qi) or defence in blogs of the coming weeks.

 


Temporary suspension of face to face consultation

To support government effort to curtail the spread of coronavirus, we will temporarily suspend face to face consultation and acupuncture service from Mon 30th March. We will re-assess the situation week by week.

Let us work together to combat the pandemic.

Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic wishes you well and safe during this difficult time. Remember to be gentle to yourself and to your family.


Qi Gong for Immunity

Qi Gong for Immunity

We talked about Qi Gong on our website.  Qi Gong is a form of exercise and self-care, and similar to Tai Chi, but it is gentler and is suitable for most people. There are many benefits of Qi Gong, including calming and enhancing the immunity. Please read our previous blogs on this topic and relevant research.

Here is a short Qi Gong session of 18 min that is specifically recorded by Master Liu to help people breath more deeply and strengthen the immunity. Master Liu is the 5th generation inheritor of the Liu He Zi Ran Men lineage. He has 30 years teaching experience in China, Australia, Europe, and South America. He combines his expertise in Qi Gong tradition with knowledge of modern science, Eastern and Western culture, in his teaching of Qi Gong.

Two staff members of Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, Paul Burns and Zhen Zheng, train under Master Liu. In March 2020, Paul received his Master Instructor certificate and Zhen received her Level 1 instructor certificate.

Key points of this Qi Gong session

Important message  

Please prioritise self-isolation and hand hygiene. No other preventive measures work better than self-isolation and hand hygiene during a pandemic like COVID-19.  Let us remember those hospital staff who risk their safety to stay at work. What we can do is to stay at home to help them and to break the chain.

Video: Qi Gong to strengthen the immunity and keep you calm

 


A new way of movement and connection

Flying with Qi
Flying

 

In the last post, I talked about awareness. Here I introduce some practice to gain better awareness.

Recently I had the opportunity to attend a Qi Gong training in north NSW delivered by Master Liu (Deming) from China. The theme of the training is called Qi Gathering, and I call it a new way of moment and connection; or a way to awareness.

The essence of this new way is Relaxation creates Space, Space creates Qi, and Qi creates Movement.

We know usually movement starts with an intention. We want to walk up hill, we want to stay upright, or we want to jump. This intention creates muscle contraction, to prepare us and to propel us to move. Then bending a knee and raising a foot to walk uphill,  or contracting muscles of the back to stay upright, or bending the knees to push upwards.

In Qi Gathering, movement starts with relaxation but not an intention. I called it a new way of movement. It might NOT be new to some people, but will be to many. This involves emptying the mind and relaxing the body, which allows a space to be created, but not to be occupied with an intention, a thought or a desired outcome. In this space, Qi is created and so is the movement. This is similar to the breeze passing through a room when a door or window is open. This form of passing through, like breeze, is the movement.

Experiment this. Now stay upright with your usual way and close your eyes. Now feel where you feel the tension and tightness. You might feel it in the low back, in the neck, in the abdomen, in the legs or in the feet. Now try again, only this time, you envision you feet planting on the ground, you relax your whole body and you relax your breathing. As you relax, you create an awareness of a space above you. This space creates Qi with a gentle uplifting force. This Qi guides you to stay upright. Now check yourself again. You will find you are staying tall and upright. Yet you do NOT have any tightness you felt the previous time.  Instead you are staying upright, tall, effortless and light.

This is the foundation of Qi Gathering. Regulating Qi is the foundation of acupuncture or Chinese medicine. If you can feel what I describe here, then congratulations. This means you have a great awareness of your body, and mind; and the great ability of letting go. If you could not feel what I describe here, then please do not get worried. If you want to experience this effortless movement, you may want to start some Qi Gong training with a teacher.

This form or concept of movement will help reduce injuries and bring agility into your movement. More important, it will bring awareness into our body as we go through our daily movement. This is mindful movement.

One could easily apply this principle to relationships with oneself or with others. The essence is letting go creates connection. We can expand this in future blogs.

Please have a look at these two short videos about Qi Gong in Geelong.

Basic Tai Chi Standing Posture

Tai Chi / Qigong Gentle Warm Up

 

 

 


How to create or maintain a balanced state? (1) – Be aware

Bubble Awareness
Bubbles: Our thoughts and emotions are like bubbles coming and going. Are we aware of them?

In our previous blog, we discussed what a balanced state looks like. This help you understand when you are balanced and when you are not balanced. In our Chinese medicine practice, people often ask us what they can do to create or maintain a balanced state. We are often overjoyed to hear this question. This question indicates that the person has made the first most critical step to a balanced state as the person has made the task their responsibility.  Indeed, a Chinese medicine practitioner may help you create a balanced state, but this state relies on the person to maintain.

A balanced state in Chinese medicine means “Yin is calm and Yang is securely inside the body to drive the life force”. That is to carry out daily activities and tasks in a calm status with direction and clear awareness.

Here are three key strategies

They are ways to carry out each strategy. In this blog, we will focus on how to be aware.

Be aware and be tuned into the moments when we are not balanced.

Often we go through life with little awareness of our thoughts or our emotions as we are busy in carrying out the conversations inside of our head. The next minute we know we are angry with some remarks or we are upset for ourselves or others not doing things properly. Those are the imbalanced moments. Actually way before those upsetting moments, dis-comfort has been simmering. If we detect those, we could easily dis-engage at that time and prevent later upsets.

To be aware, one must maintain mental clarity, including sleeping well, eating a balanced diet, and engaging in daily physical activities and awareness training. To learn how to be aware, we highly recommend reading some books or learning some techniques. There are many good resources. Here are just a few.

 


What is the Difference between Qigong and Tai Chi?

           Qi Gong vs. Tai Chi

                                                              Qigong vs. Tai Chi

 

Qigong and Tai Chi (Taijiquan) are two forms of ancient Chinese exercise for health. Tai Chi is well known in Geelong, however many people are not aware of Qi Gong and do not know the difference between the two. In this blog, we give a broad overview of similarities as well as differences.

 

 Qigong  (roughly translating to energy exercises, or Arts of Qi) is an inclusive term to describe exercise practices that focus on cultivating the Qi, or internal energy, to improve health, fitness, wellbeing and longevity.

 

 Tai Chi (developed later on) was a form of martial art developed with Qigong understanding of internal energy and how to use it for health or fighting. Tai Chi in the modern days is mostly practised with a focus on its graceful Qi cultivation side for health rather than for combat.

 

 Qigong and Tai Chi both have been developed from the same concept of Qi that is emphasised in Chinese medicine and acupuncture. Qi gives energy to life and the fluent and constant flow of Qi through the body helps maintain our health. When the flow of Qi becomes stagnant or blocked, illness can occur.

 

Similarities:

 

Qi Gong & Tai Chi share the following similarities:

 

 

Differences:

 

They differ in how they are practised and level of difficulties.

 

Application and practice

 

 

Level of difficulties

 

 

 

In closing both Qigong and Tai Chi are good for health. They complement each other, and are often taught together. If anyone is interested in experiencing these health practises please click on the link Qigong for more information.


What is a balanced state?

Fish In A Pond With Flowers
Fish In A Pond With Flowers

Following from our previous blog on what balance means, here we discuss what a balance state looks like. A balanced state is the natural state of our being. It is a state Chinese medicine described as “Yin Ping Yang Mi”. It means Yin is calm and Yang is securely inside ourselves to drive the life force.

There are a few key points to that:

So how do we know if we are in a balanced state or not?

This is an important question. If we do not know or experience the balanced state, then we will not be able to detect when our system is off balance. Here are a few key experiences.

Being balanced does not mean someone is in a total blissed state all the time without upsetting moments. Remember the Yin and Yang balance is dynamic. If you are upset, a balanced state means you will not stay in the upsetting situation for long. You are there for a few minutes or one hour or a few. You will not spend days or weeks on the same upsetting situation.

How does one stay in a balanced state or learn to be balanced? We will discuss this in future blogs. One of the methods that can be adopted by anyone is Qi Gong, or the arts of Qi (chi). It is a form of slow movement combined with breathing, mindfulness and slow stretching. Please read our blog on this.

During the long weekend holiday a couple weeks back, two staff members from Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, Paul Burns and Zhen Zheng, as well as Geelong psychologist Helen Handsjuk, went for a Qi Gong retreat. We had lots of training on how to be centred or balanced with Qi Gong. Paul received his certificate for Level Two instructor and Helen received her certificate for Level One instructor. Well done, and congratulations to both!

Qi Gong With Master Liu (1)
Qi Gong With Master Liu

(From left to rigth: Paul, Helen, Master Liu and Zhen)

 

 


We are what we eat

Colourful Food
Colourful Food

 

Healthy eating is very important. The types of nutrients in the food we consume determine the composition of every single cell in our body. On average, an adult loses roughly 300 million cells every day and we are replacing them with food. Our bodies are literally manufactured out of food we eat.

Chinese medicine understands that food has different nature and different tastes. “We are what we eat” means our constitutions are closely related to the food we choose to eat. Choosing the suitable food can improve our constitutions, or our potential to remain healthy. Here we discuss a few common types of diet and related patterns of body constitutions and provide advice on how to improve if one wishes.

The “Damp” person

Those who love high fat and high carbohydrate food would usually feel heavy in the body, and cloudy in the head. Those symptoms get worse in the afternoons. This presentation in Chinese medicine is called “dampness” accumulation in the body. Then how to get rid of “dampness”, and feel lighter in the body and clearer in the brain? Here are some tips:

The “Hot” people

“Hot” here does not really mean popular. Australia is a red meat consumption country. In Chinese medicine, eating too much red meat will produce too much heat in the body. Red meat lovers usually have red cheeks, are less tolerant to heat, feel hot and sweaty easily and crave for cold drinks. These symptoms will subside once red meat is reduced from the diet.

The “Blood” weakness type

Vegetarian and vegan diet or people who don’t like eating much meat tend to show “blood” weakness in Chinese medicine. Blood weakness is not equal to anaemia. Those people may have pale complexion, experience dizziness or low energy or feel cold in the hands and feet. They are recommended to take less raw or cold food and drinks. Replacing salad with steamed vegetable and having soup more often could be a very good start.

A healthy diet in Chinese medicine is a balanced diet, is eating many varieties in a small quantity. Whole grains, meat (red or white),  vegetables and fruits, natural, seasonal, whole food and food of different colours should be included in our everyday diet. It is recommended to take at least 20 different types of food every day. In Geelong we are fortunate to have access to fresh, local and varieties of food. Let us make good use of that.

Pickles
Pickles

Qigong: Chinese medicine self-health exercises for modern day people.

One of the many Qigong exercise movements

 

Patients often ask us at Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic what they can do at home to aid in their recovery or maintain their health. Along with diet, the movement based Qigong (See Qigong under Services heading for further explanation) exercises are the most practical for patients to do at home. Qigong exercises involve slow and gentle body movements with deep breathing and mindfulness. They are easily learnt and can always be modified based on individual’s ability or injury and illness.

 

Available to Chinese medicine are many medical and health-promoting tools such as Acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, cupping, moxibustion, massage and food & diet therapy. Included under this umbrella are the self-health exercises of Qigong.

Qigong for health maintenance and healing has long been used throughout Asia, and one just has to stroll down to any city park in the early morning in China to see the population’s belief in self-health maintenance exercises.

 

Modern scientific understanding of our bodies confirms what we already know,

 

Here are the obvious advantages of Qigong exercises:

 

Including Qigong exercises in your life is an easy way to help maintain a balance of the body and mind.

Paul teaches Qigong through Geelong City Yoga with Geelong psychologist Helen Handsjuk on Wednesday AM and through Geelong West Neighbourhood House on Thursday evening.


Yin, Yang, Balance and Chinese medicine

Are you familiar with this symbol? Of course, you say, who does not know?

Yin And Yang
Yin And Yang

But what does it mean? And how is it related to Chinese medicine?

This symbol represents the essence of the Theory of Yin and Yang, which is a philosophical understanding of the world, and is also the foundation of Chinese medicine. When Chinese medicine says Balance and Being Holistic, it refers to the Balance of Yin and Yang, and Yin and Yang together being the oneness.

This symbol says

That is Yin and Yang complements each other, and inseparable.

Yin refers to the moon, water, being cool, being statics, female, quiet, and slow; and Yang refers to the sun, fire, hot, dynamic, male, loud and quick. From health and illness point of view, a condition that is cold in nature and gets worse with cold weather or environment, it is Yin in nature. Fever, or being thirty, is considered of Yang in nature. Every phenomenon can be understood as Yin or Yang; yet in every phenomenon there are Yin and Yang elements.

When Chinese medicine talks about Balance, tt is the Yin and Yang elements that need to be balanced.

Being balanced is the ultimate natural stare of the universe. When this balance is out of its order, that is when illness happens in humans. As you can see in the diagram, the balance is not 50% vs 50%. It is a dynamic balance because the components of Yin and Yang change over time and all the time. Morning becomes noon, noon goes into afternoon, which then becomes night; night will go into dawn. This cycle continues, as Yang (morning and noon) goes into Yin (afternoon and night), and goes to Yang again. This is the dynamic balance of Yin and Yang.

Everything in the Universe consists of Yin and Yang; we are part of the Universe, so we human beings too have Yin and Yang within our body. Any external Yin and Yang changes will impact on our internal Yin and Yang. This explains why weather could impact on us. For instance in the last a few days, Geelong has been very hot. We too feel the heat. For instance before the rain comes, those who have arthritic joints will know due to a change of air pressure from high to low (from Yang to Yin). This explains oneness of our body with the Universe.

Chinese medicine positions itself on Yin and Yang theory, and considers human beings are one part of the whole Universe and follow the same rule that regulates the Universe.  That is why Chinese medicine considers all most everything that is NOT balanced could impact on our internal balance and become the cause of diseases. To become healthy again, one needs to regain this balance. To prevent one from being ill, it is essential to keep yourself Yin and Yang balanced so that this natural status will not be swayed easily by things that are out of balance.

In the future blogs, we will discuss what are considered causes of diseases and how to recognise them. And what we can do to maintain the natural state of balance.

 

 

 


Life and food in summer

Geelong Water Front Trees
Geelong Water Front Trees

Summer is here, and will be here for a while. In Geelong, summer can be hot, humid, and the temperature also changes dramatically, varying from 42 degree to 20 degree within one day.

When hot, naturally people want to take cold food and cold drink to help with the heat or dress coolly, such as wearing saddles, vests etc. In Chinese medicine, this is however a poor practice. Coldness is one of the major causes of health conditions in Chinese medicine. In winter, we dress warmly to cope with the cold, but in summer we forget that there are also cold factors when the day temperature drops greatly or when the sea breeze comes through at night.

In fact, summer is the main season when the cold environment or cold food impacts on us quietly, such an impact could show immediately, but more often the impact won’t show until winter. If you suffer from cough or asthma in winter, if you have stomach pain, diarrhoea or abdominal bloating easily, if you suffer from painful periods (for girls), or if you have low back pain or arthritis, keeping yourself warm is particularly important in summer. Those conditions indicate you are prone to be affected by the cold environment or cold food. At our Chinese medicine clinic in Geelong, we identified some commons causes leading to coldness invading into the body, and have generated a list of tips to keep yourself warm in summer and prevent from health problems in winter.

Tips to prevent coldness invasion in summer
• Take warm drinks, such as tea or coffee or warm water. Do you know taking warm drinks actually help cool your body? This seems to be counterintuitive. Check out this article.
• When eating cold salad or food, make sure you also eat something warm or drink something warm at the same time to reduce the impact of cold.
• When going into a room or place that is air conditioned, for girls or ladies, please bring a shawl to cover your shoulders; for gentlemen, please wear short or long sleeve shirts, but not vests. This is particularly important if your office is cold. You could be exposed to a cold environment for 8 hours straight. One of my common “prescriptions” is a few beautiful shawls for ladies.
• When sleep, make sure you are covered with something; even a thin sheet would be very helpful. Our body temperature drops when we sleep or be in station and this is the time when a cold environment impacts on our body greatly.
• Sitting or sleeping away from any direct wind. Wind helps the coldness penetrate into the body.

So food, drink and dress are the ones to think about in summer.


Acupuncture and Chinese medicine helps reduce need for Hayfever medications.

3[2]

The Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) team at Geelong Chinese medicine clinic (GCMC) welcomes you to spring. As acupuncturists and Chinese medicine herbalists, we see numerous people suffering from seasonal and all year round allergies. Along with conditions such as pain, headaches, migraines, anxiety and depression, allergies are one of the most common conditions seen in our clinic.

If you suffer from Hayfever/ seasonal allergic rhinitis (SAR), basically it involves the body’s immune system becoming over reactive to certain things in the environment (i.e. pollens) that aren’t a problem for most people. There are many theories on the different ways that cause this, but simply your body has learned to be allergic to certain things.

Hayfever (SAR) symptoms: (similar to cold or flu like symptoms)

(ASCIA, 2017)

Modern allergy medications for Hayfever (SAR) come in various forms such sprays, tablets, syrups, flushes and even injections to provide short-term relief. They do not cure allergies, but simply block the symptoms.

 

Are there natural alternatives to help stop or reduce the need for allergy medications for Hayfever (SAR)?

This is a common question from patients at Geelong Chinese medicine clinic.

The short answer is yes.

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) offers both acute symptom relief management and longer period treatment to attempt to regulate the TCM constitutional imbalances and calm the immune system overreaction.

A 2018 clinical trial review of acupuncture on antihistamine use in patients suffering seasonal allergic rhinitis showed the acupuncture group had a lot fewer days (10 days less) of antihistamine use and 38% of the acupuncture group didn’t need any medication at all in comparison to 16% in the routine management group (Adam et al, 2018)

 

Best time for treating Hayfever (SAR)

Just like preparation for bushfires is best done before the actual fire season, in regards to Hayfever (SAR) the best time to come for treatment is 2-3 months (Autumn/Winter) before the hayfever season (Spring) starts. For all year round sufferers, anytime is a good time to start treatment.

But as most people don’t know this, the majority of Hayfever sufferers come in peak season (Spring). When this happens we end up focussing more on symptom relief before we can get to working on underlying constitutional causes. However, we aim to lessen their symptoms and then decrease allergic responses in following seasons.

 

Future Blog articles will address self-care strategies for Hay fever/ SAR sufferers such as commonly used acupressure points that can help reduce acute symptoms.

References:

https://www.allergy.org.au/patients/allergic-rhinitis-hay-fever-and-sinusitis/allergic-rhinitis-or-hay-fever

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29440045

 

 


Healthy eating tips from Chinese medicine

The views on healthy food change all the time, usually depending on the latest research findings. In Chinese medicine, the concept of healthy eating has never changed. Choosing from seasonal and unprocessed food with various colours and flavours to match with individual constitution is the key of a healthy diet. In Chinese medicine, food is considered as important as medicine.

Indeed, we are what we eat!

Same as Chinese medicine herbs, food have different natures: cool, cold, neutral, warm, and hot. The nature of food is determined by the effects they have on the person’s body after consumption. If a person frequently eat the same type of food, it creates imbalance in the body. For example, red meat lovers usually show excessive heat in the body, with symptoms such as feeling hot, sweaty, thirsty, grumpy, and constipation.

Food is also categorised by their taste. There are five different tastes: sour, bitter, sweet, pungent and salty. Each taste of food corresponds to a different organ in Chinese: sour food enters the Liver, bitter food is good for the Heart, sweet food strengthens the Spleen, pungent food nourishes the Lung and salty food goes to the Kidney.  Here Liver, Heart, Spleen, Lung and Kidney refer to Chinese medicine organs, but not those of Western medicine.

The climate is an important factor of our food choices. People from hot and humid places will benefit from eating some spicy food to bring sweat out (to remove dampness from body). Whereas in Geelong, it is dry and windy in most time of the year, residents are recommended not to have too much chilli and spices, but eat more seasonal vegetables and take more soup and broth to reduce the impact of the dry environment.

Here are the tips about food from Chinese medicine

Remember it is all about balancing and nurturing the body.

Reference:
https://www.dw.com/en/healthy-eating-in-traditional-chinese-medicine/a-18619239

 


Hayfever and acupuncture and needle-free acupuncture in Geelong

Spring is coming. Sunshine, green grass and flowers. Life is beautiful again, although that may not be so to some people. With spring, here comes hayfever. If you have an itchy nose, runny nose, and/or itchy eyes, and sneeze a lot, then you might have hayfever, which is also called seasonal allergic rhinitis. For some people, the symptoms are so bad that their sleep is disturbed and their physical and mental functioning decline because the nose is so blocked.

Acupuncture, a non-drug alternative therapy for hayfever

It is easy to take antihistamines, but for some the medications do not work, or used to work, but no longer work. Some people have hayfever-type symptoms all year around, which is called perennial allergic rhinitis. For them, using those medications in long terms might not be a good option. Any other solutions?

Acupuncture is one of the none-drug interventions that have been shown to be effective for hayfever, and is now in the Guidelines for treating hayfever.

In the last 20 years, researches at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia, have conducted a few randomised and controlled trials and found acupuncture was better than sham acupuncture, or fake acupuncture, for seasonal and as well as perennial hayfever.

Needle-free options for acupuncture

In the hayfever season, weekly acupuncture treatments at our Geelong clinic for six weeks are needed. For those who do not like acupuncture, needle-free acupuncture can be used to stimulating therapeutic body point.

“Take away” treatment

At Geelong Chinese Medicine Clinic, we will apply seeds or beads to certain areas of your ears. This is called auricular acupressure. It is “take away” treatment to sustain the effect of acupuncture. Chinese herbal medicine is also commonly prescribed for hayfever. The outcome of the combined therapies is often very good.

Individualised approaches to hayfever

From a Chinese medicine view, hayfever is due to that body’s defence system being weak. Depending on your presentations, there are at least three different types of weak defence system. Treatments need to be provided accordingly to strength those systems to moderate the allergic reaction. It is also advisable to have a few treatments during non-hayfever season to prevent hayfever.

Preventative measures for you to take

Please check our previous blog on how to reduce contact with allergens.


Simple tips for reducing spring allergies

Spring is fast approaching and with the changing of the seasons comes an increase of pollen in the environment, which means a lot of people with allergies are going to be reaching for a box of tissues.

Allergic rhinitis (commonly known as hay fever) affects around 18% of people (children and adults) in Australia. It is caused by the nose and/or eyes coming into contact with environmental allergens, such as pollens, dust mite, moulds and animal hair.

While complete avoidance of pollen is impractical there is still a lot you can do to minimise exposure to these allergens. These range from simple measures taken around the house to changing routines. This article will focus on the simple tips for reducing pollen exposure. Other articles will focus on the treatments that usually accompany these measures.

Forewarned

Protect your home

Going outdoors

When possible avoid going outside, especially on windy days and during the early morning hours, when pollen counts are highest.

Coming home

As soon as you arrive home – even if you’ve just been in the backyard:

References:
https://www.allergy.org.au/patients/allergic-rhinitis-hay-fever-and-sinusitis/pollen-allergy
https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ConditionsAndTreatments/hay-fever


About pain management – Chinese medicine view

60 to 80% of patients who visit a primary health practitioner have some forms of pain. Dr Zheng says “Pain is a common yet complex symptom, and can affect one’s life profoundly. Pain sufferers often feel irritable, have low energy and insomnia, and can suffer from functional impairment. I believe pain and the sufferer should be understood and managed as a whole, and a combination of various therapies often achieves better therapeutic results than one particular therapy does.”

For more information, please see http://healthtimes.com.au/hub/pain-management/44/research/kk1/acupuncture-for-pain-management/1581/.