Paediatrics and Chinese Medicine
How can this help your child?
Chinese medicine has a very unique way of looking at the body. It takes into account that our body, mind and spirit are intricately connected. It looks at what is happening overall in the body and makes sense of that using an elegant and detailed understanding of these interconnections that has been used for thousands of years. For example, say your child gets constipated, plus itchy hot skin in the upper parts of their body and they don’t sleep well. This would be translated as stagnation in the intestines causing heat to rise in the skin. The skin and Large Intestine are connected in Chinese medicine, so clearing up the intestines will help the skin to be clearer, less hot and less itchy. So the focus would be on the intestines but there would also be attention paid directly to the skin.
The techniques we have available to us to use on your child vary according to whether they are diagnosed as being more excess or deficient in terms of their constitution. For more excessive children, quick acupuncture with an extremely fine needle is the best method for treatment, where the pin is popped in and then pulled out almost straight away. It is left in longer the older they get but they don’t need to lie still, we can follow them around the treatment room whilst they play with toys or sit you on your lap. When they can lie still, they do, it’s all age dependant and we work with where they are at.
For more deficient children, a warming therapy of moxibustion is more appropriate, this is applied directly to the skin via special Japanese tool called a Tiger Warmer or via a moxibustion stick. It feels good on their skin and it is usually well tolerated.
We often teach you how to massage your child as this can help enormously with their overall wellbeing and connection with you.
We look at your child’s diet and tweak that to ensure they are having what they need to help them get the nutrients they need to be healthy. We look at their sleep habits, lifestyle, day care or school schedule, screen time and more to see what else we can tweak that will benefit their physical and emotional health.
Some of the practitioners at Wholistic Medical Centre use Chinese herbal medicine for children too, in easy to administer preparations. Herbal medicine has been used in China for children for centuries.
The other interesting part of the equation is you. In Chinese medicine there is a saying: ‘The mother feeds the child’. This means the main care giver (mother or father or close relative) literally feeds the child but they also feed them emotionally and spiritually. We commonly see mums (and sometimes dads) who bring in their children for treatment but who aren’t taking care of themselves yet for whatever reason. There’s no judgement around this, however it’s important for you to know that the state of your health and well-being will impact your children. So for those who are interested, we also offer treatment for mums (and dads), often with herbs as they are super busy, to help them re-balance at the same time as their child. You don’t need to use Chinese medicine to do this but it is something that may need to be addressed.
What kinds of conditions would you consider Chinese medicine for?
If you are wanting to try a natural holistic solution for your child’s health then this is something to consider. We work closely with GPs and Paediatricians to effect the best results for our clients. The Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners at the Wholistic Medical Centre see ourselves as a support to your primary GP. We encourage you to keep good relationships with them as we believe in integrative healthcare.
What actually happens in a treatment session?
This is different depending on the practitioner you choose to see.
How long does it normally take to be effective?
This really depends on the nature of your child’s symptoms, how long they have had them for and how old they are. Generally speaking, the younger they are, the quicker the turn around but it depends on how many recommended changes you can take on board at once and it depends on their system’s ability to change direction. For many children though, changes happen quickly as they haven’t had as much time for things to go off track.
How old does my child need to be?
We have seen children as young as 3 weeks old.
Where else in the world is this practiced?
Germany, USA, Canada, China, England, New Zealand and Australia, to name a few
In the USA it is being practiced in many hospitals for children where they are integrating medicine more and more:
Getting to the Point, Episode 1, Children’s Hospital of Orange County (this shows how acupuncture is used in tandem with regular medical care in this hospital)
Boston’s Children’s Hospital: http://www.childrenshospital.org/conditions-and-treatments/treatments/acupuncture
Children’s Hospital Los Angeles: https://www.chla.org/acupuncture-program
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia: https://www.chop.edu/services/acupuncture-program
UC Davis Children’s Hospital: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5Eh-56CLIk
The World Health Organisation officially recognises Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and acupuncture. See this article for all the details: https://www.wphealthcarenews.com/world-health-organization-officially-recognizes-traditional-chinese-medicine/