WHY DO WE NEED AN INTEGRATIVE APPROACH?
Our society is experiencing a sharp increase in the number of people and children who suffer from complex, chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, mental disorders, autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis, mood disorders and various neurological disorders, to name a few.
Unfortunately, a very useful and highly advanced acute-care approach to medicine lacks the proper methodology and tools for preventing and treating a lot of these complex, chronic diseases. There has to be honoring and major recognition to the advances that has been made in medicine, Well-meaning physicians apply only specific, prescribed treatments such as drugs or surgery that aim to treat the immediate problem or symptom. In most cases it does not take into account the unique constitution of the patient, environmental exposures to toxins and other aspects of today’s lifestyle that have a direct influence on the rise in chronic disease in modern Western society.
There’s a huge gap between research and the way most physicians practice in these areas today, particularly in the area of complex, chronic illness. Fortunately, a big movement is happening and a lot more colleagues have taken the responsibility to look at the research and upgrade the way they practice to better help the people we all get to serve!
The patient’s history, which includes her current symptoms, physical state, diet, environmental influences and lifestyle, among other factors, to extrapolate a pattern and current-state-overview or discover the “why” behind it is an integrative approach. Recognizing each disciplines strengths and using these approaches the necessary ways is the priority of this approach this approach usually points to the origin (root) of the problem and the condition of the body at present (branch). This is the main reason why acupuncture (tcm) and functional medicine principles work in very similar and very complementary ways to address the problem at large.
WHAT IS ACUPUNCTURE?
Acupuncture originated in China around 3,500 years ago and remains one of the oldest, most commonly used systems of healing in the world. These days, science can explain its effectiveness.
- Connective tissue winds around the needles, increasing electrical conductivity.
- Doppler ultrasound shows that acupuncture increases blood flow and circulation.
- MRI readings demonstrate that acupuncture increases blood flow and circulation.
- Thermal imaging reveals that acupuncture reduces inflammation.
Acupuncture is the stimulation of specific points usually by the insertion of very fine, sterile, stainless steel needles that have the ability to alter various biochemical and physiological conditions in order to treat a wide variety of illnesses. There are methods such as laser, cupping, Shonishin tools (Japanese tools) that do not require the insertion of needles to stimulate these points and are widely used in the treatment of children, compromised tissue or very sensitive patients. Stimulating acupuncture points on the surface of the skin is a method to encourage the body to promote it’s natural restorative abilities and improve overall function.
Acupuncture is part of a complete medical system in Eastern Asia often refer as TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) since it originated in China around 3,500 years ago. This medical system has been refined and further advanced both in China and Japan as well as other Asian countries. It takes into consideration chief complaint, individual’s constitution, diet, environmental influences and lifestyle, among other factors to arrive to a diagnosis and possible method of treatment. The term Traditional Chinese refers to the science’s roots in early Chinese naturalist thought, sometimes called Daoism, but the science is now a worldwide medical practice, with medical schools around the world teaching TCM, Japanese style of Acupuncture and it has been widely integrated into hospital settings and medical doctors’ practices, especially in China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Europe and Brazil.
WHAT IS FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE?
Functional Medicine similarly to TCM approach to health addresses the underlying causes of disease, using a systems-oriented approach. It is an evolution in the practice of medicine.
It is commonly called, the science of “why”. Functional lab testing is the cornerstone of functional medicine. Functional lab testing is used to assess the overall function of your body with an optimal range of comparison vs the standard range. Cutting-edge lab testing is an incredible tool that allows the practitioner and the patient to observe and track measurable markers that are contributing to dysregulation. Functional medicine approach looks beyond traditional diagnostic testing to discover the root cause and establish an individualized plan of action for each patient. Instead of looking for and treating the symptoms of disease, functional medicine principles looks at networks of function and a number of factors that are contributing to the dysfunction in your body.
Acupuncture (tcm) and functional medicine principles do not take a patient’s symptoms and put a disease or illness label on it. An experienced acupuncture physician and/or functional medicine practitioner first takes the patient’s history, which includes her current symptoms, physical state, diet, environmental influences and lifestyle, among other factors, to extrapolate a pattern(tcm) and current-state-overview or discover the “why”(fm). This approach usually points to the origin (root) of the problem and the condition of the body at present (branch). This is the main reason why acupuncture (tcm) and functional medicine principles work in very similar and very complementary ways to address the problem at large.