MENTAL HEALTH IS EQUALLY AS IMPORTANT AS PHYSICAL HEALTH – A TRADITIONAL CHINESE MEDICINE PERSPECTIVE

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By William Ly

We all have experienced some form of stress at some point in our lives and especially when we are collectively managing the COVID-19 outbreak in Australia. 

It could be as simple as not being able to see a friend due to repeated lockdowns or of a more serious nature such as dealing with the passing of a loved one.

It is normal to experience a little stress in everyday life and, to a certain degree, it can even be beneficial to our overall wellbeing. It can help elevate us to another level of optimal awareness and can lead to improved cognitive performance.

However, if an individual is going through a rather stressful phase for a prolonged period of time this can later lead to the manifestation of other mental health issues such as anxiety and depression.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), mental health conditions are an indication of the disharmony between the internal organs and the stagnation of Qi (life force energy) within the body. In TCM, it is believed that mental health and physical health are intimately connected. Hence, if an individual is overstressed and negative emotions develop intrinsically as a result over a prolonged period of time their physical health will deteriorate.

TCM theory believes that once internal organs become imbalanced it will affect the Qi movement within the body and even cause Qi to become stagnated. As discussed in my Brain Fog article, in order to stay mentally focused there needs to be a sufficient amount of Qi and nutrient-rich blood to circulate within the brain. When Qi becomes ‘blocked’ and fails to circulate within the brain you will most likely develop unwanted health conditions to appear.

The treatment principle of Chinese Medicine is to restore the imbalanced organs and re-establish the free movement of Qi. Acupuncture coupled with the combined use of selective herbal medicine has always been used to reconnect the mind and the body. In doing so, we are able to restore balance to your health.

If you have any health concerns please always seek tailored health advice from your qualified health practitioners.

William is the TCM Dr and Acupuncturist at the Western Health Collective

Here are some helpful tips to help manage your mental health:

  1. Seek a health practitioner or psychologist for professional support
  2. Start a conversation with a friend or family about your mental health
  3. Start eating a healthier diet
  4. Exercise regularly
  5. Meditation or breathing exercises can also help with calming the mind
  6. Have recommended 7-8hrs of sleep
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