In TCM, pain is generally regarded as a result of Qi and Blood stagnation or deficiency. When the normal flow of Qi and Blood is blocked or retarded, discomfort or pain may be experienced.
Qi and Blood stagnation may lead to swelling, stiff and sore muscles, joint pain, headache, stomach pain, menstrual pain, chest pain or sore throat. When Qi and Blood do not flow smoothly, the affected areas will not get enough nourishment, hence leading to mild and chronic pain. The pain is usually relieved with pressure and improves with adequate rest.
General Treatment Principle
In treating pain, TCM focuses on clearing excess, resolving stagnation and nourishing deficiency.
Pain can be relieved with a combination of treatment modalities, such as acupuncture, therapeutic massage, moxibustion or herbal prescription. Acupuncture is the principal treatment modality most physicians would adopt as it is believed to be a more effective solution for pain. It promotes smooth flow of Qi and helps to restore balance. It also helps to dispel wind, relieve heat, and resolve stagnated phlegm and blood stasis.
Listed below are a few of herbs used to alleviate different types of pain:
• Epigastric or abdominal pain due to indigestion:
Perilla Stem (Zisugeng, 紫苏梗), Cyperus (Xiangfu, 香附), Tangerine Peel (Chenpi, 陈皮), Fresh Ginger (Shengjiang, 生姜)
• Headache due to influenza:
Peppermint (Bohe, 薄荷), Magnolia (Xinyi, 辛夷), Chrysanthemum (Juhua, 菊花) , Patchouli (Guanghuoxiang, 广藿香)
• Rheumatic condition or joint pain:
Doubleteeth Pubescent Angelica Root (Duhuo, 独活), Chinese Clemantis Root (Weilingxian, 威灵仙)
• Menstrual pain:
Angelica Root (Danggui, 当归), India Madder Root (Qiancao, 茜草), Argy Wormwood Leaf (Aiye, 艾叶)
• Back pain:
Cibot Rhizome (Gouji, 狗脊), Desertliving Cistanche (Roucongrong, 肉苁蓉), Eclipta (Mohanlian, 墨旱莲)
Consult your physician to identify the underlying causes for your pain so that treatment can be administered according to your body constitution and root causes.