I’m writing this newsletter in an airport, enjoying observing the diversity of our world and the interesting walks of the human race. The holiday season is well underway, and the tiny human beings that we are in Mother Natures’ world, will take flight in finding strength – that is, returning to home, visiting with friends, and spending time to themselves. Or instead, this may be a difficult time of year for you, and you take this time to find the strength to get through this smoothly. At at this time, do all that helps re-nourish you, and hence give you strength and the will to continue to trek along in life, finding your path.
In following with Red Tree Wellness’ philosophy of helping guide you on your pathway to health, this is the second in the next series of newsletters that will focus on educating you about a condition that relates to that season’s element from a Chinese Medicine perspective, and how to understand it better.
Winter has already begun in the Chinese calender, that is, the start of the cooling trend. Winter’s element is Water, which also appropriately at this time of year, represents travel, in Chinese Astrology. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Water is related to the Kidney and Bladder meridian system, which has a great deal to do with our Will and our Strength. One very common condition in Western medicine is Arthritis. In Chinese Medicine, Arthritis, both osteo and rheumatoid, are highly related to the Kidney meridian system. The Kidneys are, in charge of bone and teeth health. If they begin to under-function (for a variety of reasons), then they are not able to provide enough vitality to the bones and teeth, and these areas begin to degrade. What we can see from scans is a bone degeneration happening, which leads to an inflammatory response and possibly local tension also, from the surrounding tissues, trying to hold and keep the area strong, taking on more of a functional role than in should be, and as a result, taking on more than it can handle. How does the under-functioning begin? This usually beings from those areas being overused, over time, and the meridians reach a point years later, where it can’t keep up with working, and re-nourishing. It looses the push-pull battle of output and resource, and the resource begins to fail.
Typically with arthritis, in Chinese medicine, we see an accumulation happening, which we call Dampness, coupled with either a heat or cold response from the area. What this shows is what is going on internally with the body, i.e. is the body low or high on Yin nourishment or Yang nourishment. As it sounds, Dampness has a watery quality too it, with a stickiness or heaviness, which makes it hard to get rid of. Arthritis sufferers in TCM, feel worse in damp or rainy weather, because this nature we are absorbing, adds to the already excessive accumulation of Dampness in the bones and joints. Some also feel worse with hot or humid weather, where others will feel worse with cold or cold and damp weather. This is reflective of the difference of what is going in on their body, and in TCM, we treat these differently. No condition is treated exactly the same in TCM. While we follow guidelines, a TCM practitioner is always treating according the individual’s unique set of symptoms, thereby being more effective at treating the root problem, and preventing recurrence. As you can imagine, customizing treatments, also leads to a variety of things that unlayer as the body heals, creating a gradual and unique process of healing, and everyone’s own individual pathway to health. While we always strive to teach you home remedies, sometimes, it isn’t strong enough, and that is a signal that your body needs the help of a Registered TCM professional.
Speaking of home health, as I have mentioned in previous newsletters, Red Tree Wellness will be doing ongoing Health at Home seminars, to teach you home tips on a variety of conditions. Here’s what we having coming up:
~ Understanding our health, wealth and relationships with
~ Fighting Colds and Flus at Home
~ Chinese Face Reading Health Signs
Visit our Continuing Education page regularly for updates on seminars being offered, and register online! Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the most up-to-date information on our seminars. Please let us know what you would like to learn about!
Last but not least, who do you know that has always wanted to check us out and perhaps try a mini-treatment? Our Annual Open House celebrating the Lunar New Year will be on Thursday, January 26th, 2012 from 5:30 – 7:00pm. Going back to our roots of when we first began our open houses, we will be doing mini-facial acupuncture treatments by donation to the charity – this year to Create Change. Help yourself while also helping fellow humans on a more global level. Bring a friend, and have some traditional Chinese New Year treats and tea, and find out about your astrology for the new year. Best of all, you can also enjoy some Stella & Dot jewelry shopping with a special cash & carry sample sale, with all proceeds going to charity! Help us make a difference while treating you, and treating yourself! Reserve your spot by calling the clinic. For more details, please see our Announcements page.
To all of you, Happy Holidays and many blessings for a happy and healthy New Year!
Sonia F. Tan
BA, BA(H), DTCM, R.Ac, R.TCM.P.