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Why You May Not Be Feeling Better

Why You May Not Be Feeling Better

Very often my clients would seek acupuncture and herbal medicine after a serious episode of flu and suffering from chronic symptoms like indigestion, reflux, insomnia, coughing or chest congestion. They would often said “My body just doesn’t feel the same” and have done a fair few medical tests and tried a few different medication, none of which fully resolve the issue. They often end up feeling hopeless and frustrated about the situation.

From a Traditional Chinese Medicine perspective, why can chronic problem arise?

Traditional Chinese Medicine has the belief that optimal body function depends on the Qi and warm energy. Collectively we call it Yang Qi. The role of Yang Qi includes propelling the blood circulation, metabolise food and water, assist breathing and work as a defences system from cold invasion.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, “catching a cold” means our body warmth is cool off by the atmospheric cold which could be low temperature, winds, rain and snow. Based on Yin and yang theory, cold Yin damage warm Yang. It triggers a cascade of symptoms like chills, fever, sore throat, runny nose, headache..etc. With rest or medication, cold and flu symptoms could be relief; virus and bacteria could be eliminated. However our Yang Qi has already been taxed so it is only operating on a sub-optimal level. Thereby our bodies cannot function properly. Without proper restoration of Yang Qi, this situation could linger for years without proper restoration.

Your body is like a car which hasn’t been service for a long time. All mechanical part is intact, however it require a “tune up” to perform at its best. In a post viral complication situation, all the virus and bacteria is eliminated, there are absence of tissue or organ damage. However you may still experiencing a variety of chronic symptoms and this most likely due to the body hypo function. The body need some assistance to restore its function. This goes inline with western medicine research, when body temperature drops only slightly, our enzymes which govern varies metabolic active in the body will become hypofunction; virus and bacteria will grow and multiply more rapidly when body temperature slightly reduce. These explains why we will catch recurring sore throat and cold or experience chronic symptoms couldn't shake it off.

For example, Traditional Chinese Medicine views water metabolism to be governed by lung and digestive system. When these system “cools down” due to Yang Qi depleted, fluid will stagnated. Similar metaphor, when we boil water, as warm temperature raise. It can move, vaporise and infuse the water with kinetic energy, where as cold water is without movement, static and stagnated (think about ice). We will experience this stagnation of fluid as phlegm. Phlegm in the lung could cause shortness of breath, nasal congestion, asthma. Phlegm in the digestion could reduce appetite and lead to vomiting, reflux or diarrhea.

Each individual may experience different symptoms due to genetics, lifestyle, geographic location and other influence.

Symptoms may include:

• Anxiety, palpitation
• Chest vexation and congestion
• Unexplained anger, irritability, agitation or fear
• Ear feel chronicle “block”
• Shortness of breath, phlegm, cough
• Frequent urination, difficult urination
• Water retention, swelling
• Joint aches and pains
• Diarrhoea, reflux, vomiting, food sensitive allergy
• Rashes , acne
• Recurring sore throat

Traditional Chinese Medicine is a functional medicine, it’s principle is focus on restoration. This allopathic approach with Acupuncture and Herbal medicine are aim to restore the Yang Qi, as the warm energy return, blood will circulate smoothly; nutrient and fluid can be metabolise; the strength of the defense system is back. It creates an environment which is not suitable for the virus and bacteria to habitat. As a result of that, immune system is back to normal and chronic symptoms could subside or eliminate.

Wayne Chung is an incredibly compassionate and enthusiastic acupuncturist and Traditional Chinese Medicine doctor (TCM).

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