Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is the collective term for the traditional Eastern medicines of China. Oriental Medicine (OM) is the collective term for the traditional healing arts of China, Korea and Japan.
Whereas Western medicine was interrupted through the centuries with wars, the plaque and the ensuing dark ages, Oriental medicine has had a uninterrupted 2500 year history.
Mediterranean concepts of health and medicine when notables like Aristotle existed were often concepts that had filtered with traders through mountain passes from China and today’s India/Pakistan and many concepts that were incorporated into Ayurvedic medicine in India, derived from Chinese theories of medicine.
Otzi, the iceman found in glacial melt in the mountains between Austria and Italy, is believed to by about 5000 years old and has tattoos that some believe may have been commonly used acupuncture points.
The first textbook of medicine was written in China. The Yellow Emperors Text, written about 2100 to 2500 years ago comprehensively outlined the use of acupuncture, herbs, massage, and physical manipulation of joints and soft tissues and has illustrations that may show the first neck adjustments (Tui na). Chiropractic, acupuncture, massage and nutrition, when used together, are basically following the healthcare concepts that are 4000 to 5000 years old.
Mainstream medicine is a fairly new concept having been around less than 500 years. In the US medicine has (for the past 100 years) been a battleground between the different areas of health care. The model of care adopted to the exclusion of other philosophies has been to use drugs for wider and potentially less appropriate ranges of health conditions, often impeding the patient from actually attaining optimal wellness.
A basic example of this is pain. A patient has an injury that hurts their back, they are instructed to use pain medication so they can continue to the do the things that make the pain worse. The pain doesn’t go away and over time, worsens, they are now prescribed an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory). Literature has identified that long term use of NSAID’s prolongs healing, so, using pain medications to do the things that pain would tell them NOT to do, and using NSAID’s to reduce the inflammatory process, over a period of months, this patient becomes a chronic pain patient, needing, over time, stronger medication and maybe even narcotic medication.
How should a situation like this be handled? A patient is injured and hurts their back. They should ice it, and consider acupuncture to stimulate healing and reduce pain in the process, and chiropractic to fix the mechanics of the injury. Over time, the appropriate exercises for the injury will be introduced (as soon as the patient can tolerate them) and the area will be strengthened and range of motion increased to optimize function. If the patient has a terrible diet, this will be addressed so the patient can have the fundamental building blocks of healing that the body tissues require. If the patient can’t or won’t improve their diet, supplements may be suggested to get the patient adequate nutrition for healing. This patient is substantially more likely to return to normal activities with no issues or minimal issues.
While alternative or complementary medicines may have distinct philosophies about patient care, they have one common goal and that is a desire to help patients heal until they achieve a higher degree of wellness.
In our quest to become “cutting edge” and “state of the art” in healthcare, we have failed because healthcare has become less common sense based and more of an economy of technological advancement and profit. Even developing countries, who have what Americans would consider “substandard” health care are, remarkably healthier than we are. Note our rank in this World Health Organization ranking published in 2000 .
3 San Marino
18 United Kingdom
26 Saudi Arabia
27 United Arab Emirates
36 Costa Rica
37 United States of America
It is not too late to decide to take charge of your health and redefine quality of health for you and your family.
The doctors of Crosby Chiropractic can assist you with chiropractic, acupuncture, Traditional Chinese medicine, nutrition and rehabilitation. If you are willing to commit to your health differently, we have the tools to help you attain a more optimal state of health.