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Acupuncture Blog

Why do I need to tell my acupuncturist or TCM doctor all the conditions or complaints I have even though I only need them to treat my allergy?


TCM takes everything about the body as a whole. Generally, TCM specialists treat disease according to patterns, not just the diagnosed condition. In most casess the patterns the patient falls into are much more important than the diagnosed condition. The pattern here means differentiation type.

To figure out what kind of differentiation type the patient is, the TCM specialist needs to know all of the complaints of patients even if the patients think it is unnecessary or unrelated. The tongue has to be examined and the pulse has to be checked as well to figure out what the differentiation type is. For example, you feel irritated easily with no reason. You may feel this is not related to allergies but for the purpose of differentiation, this will make a difference. When you are treated with either acupuncture or herbs, or both, we need to consider your irritability with no reason as well because the energy of the liver does not flow smoothly or you have chi stagnation, etc. According to TCM, this will affect the treatment if you don’t take it into consideration and treat it. Another example is if you have a cold and see a TCM doctor for allergies. Otherwise the differentiation can not be completed and the treatment will not work well.

TCM doctors do not only treat your specific complaints. They need regulate your whole body as well because every part of the body could affect each other. Allergies are a problem within the immune system, but could have been brought on by different reasons. In TCM all the organs’ functions could be associated with the immune system’s function. Let’s say if you have a seasonal allergy, but you also experience headaches, fullness sensation in the side of the upper body, irritated easily, and/or poor appetite, wiry pulse, and a thin white coating on the tongue. The differentiation will be liver stagnation. Not only do we need to treat your allergy, but also we need to treat the liver stagnation. Otherwise, the allergy treatment won’t get perfect results, perhaps not even any results.