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      Acupuncture promotes natural healing. It can enhance recuperative
      power and immunity, support physical and emotional health, and
      improve overall functioning and well-being.

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What TCM Treats
Acupuncture is perhaps the most well-known aspect of Traditional Chinese Medicine. At the core of TCM is the philosophy that
"qi" or life energy, flows throughout the body, animates it and protects it from pain and disease. A person's health is influenced by the quality, quantity and balance of qi.

Qi moves through specific pathways in the body called meridians. There are 14 main meridians, and each is connected to specific organs and glands. The meridians function much like rivers, providing life-giving qi, or energy, to every cell, organ, gland, tissue and muscle in the body.

An obstruction to the flow of
qi in one part restricts the flow of nourishment to other parts. Physical and emotional trauma, stress, lack of exercise, overexertion, seasonal changes, poor diet, accidents, or excessive activity can influence the quality, quantity and balance of qi. An acupuncturist uses a variety of treatment modalities to unblock obstructions in the flow of qi.

The philosophy and practice of acupuncture is rooted in the Taoist tradition which began well over 6,000 years ago.
It is believed that during that time, the flow of energy within the body and discovery of meridians was first observed through meditation.

During the period of the Yellow Emperor Huang Di (2697-2597 BC), the knowledge of medicine that had accumulated for thousands of years was recorded. The Yellow Emperor's Classic of Internal Medicine indicates an elaborate understanding of the body, its functioning and disorders, as well as treatments based on the
meridians and 160 identified acupuncture points.

As early as 1000 BC, hieroglyphs appeared showing evidence of acupuncture and moxibustion. Mostly stone and some bronze needles were used until gold and silver needles replaced them in the first few centuries BC.

Around 265 AD, another classic text was compiled by Huang Fu Mi describing 349 acupuncture points, and is considered to be significantly influential in the history of Chinese medicine. The Xu Xi family were considered experts in the art of acupuncture from this period until 581 AD when acupuncture schools began to appear and the knowledge became more widely accessible. By 1200 AD, the number of points identified had risen to 657.

The Ming Dynasty (1568 - 1644) is considered the enlightenment period for Chinese medicine: classic texts were revised, techniques refined and new ones developed, and the use of points outside the main meridians were introduced.

Later dynasties saw the suppression of acupuncture and the rise of herbal medicine. Following the Revolution of 1911, Western Medicine was introduced, and both acupuncture and herbal medicine suppressed. But due to a widespread and largely rural population, the "barefoot doctor" emerged and helped to perpetuate acupuncture and herbal remedies.

This "folk" medicine once again earned the respect of government officials when it sustained the Chinese troops during harsh conditions of the Long March of 1934-35, and finally in 1950, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Western Medicine were officially united. Both are now commonly offered in Chinese hospitals.

A trend toward integrating TCM into Western medical practices is emerging in parts of the U.S. as well, as physicians from both traditions are finding that patients can benefit significantly from a treatment plan that includes elements of both Western and Traditional Chinese Medicine.