Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is one of a range of natural therapies utilised to treat a wide range of illness and disease; including endometriosis. Natural therapies are valued for their relative lack of side effects and non-invasive characteristics.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is the migration and growth of endometrial cells outside the uterus, which can cause health complications and may even result in infertility. The endometrium is the inner lining of the womb, from where the cells can start to colonise any adjacent cells or organs including the bladder, fallopian tubes, ovaries, and bowel. They then begin to behave as they would within the womb and begin to grow, inflaming surrounding tissues. The exact cause of endometriosis is unclear but risk factors may include the early onset of menstruation, allergies, obesity, genetics and exposure to toxins in the environment. The most common symptoms of endometriosis include:
- painful and/or heavier periods
- pain in the lower abdomen
- pelvic and lower back pain
- pain during intercourse; and
- fertility complications
Conventional medical treatments include pain killers and anti-inflammatories, as well as surgery. Hormone therapy is also utilised, but this does have implications for fertility, as ovulation and menstruation are suppressed by this treatment. Exercise and childbearing are also thought to mitigate against endometriosis.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is the ancient healing tradition of that country, and makes use of a range of treatments include herbal medicine, acupuncture, breathing therapy, and massage. The primary objective of TCM is to holistically diagnose and treat illness and diseases, taking into account all facets of mind and body. The principle source of health in TCM is the life force or energy called chi, which flows between organs in the body in meridians or energy pathways. Ill health and disease is seen as a blockage of the flow of chi, and needs to be removed to restore an individual’s health to normal.
TCM for Endometriosis
TCM believes that endometriosis is primarily caused by low blood circulation, which is typically treated with herbal remedies. Some studies have also identified endometriosis as a immune related condition, which TCM would use acupuncture to treat. This treatment has been shown to improve the functioning of the immune system while stimulating the nervous system to release hormones. A qualified TCM practitioner is best placed to advise on any course of treatment for endometriosis.
Find out about other effective natural endometrios treatments.
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