FAQ's about Chinese Herbal Medicine

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How does Chinese herbal medicine work?


Chinese Herbal Medicine uses herbs in combination, that is, one or a few main herb complemented by others in a planned structure. The combination of Chinese Herbal Medicine with Acupuncture that makes Chinese Medicine so effective for chronic internal conditions.


For instance, if you suffer from arthritis, you may be aware of the pain, the lack of mobility and maybe the deterioration of the digestive system. However, arthritis cannot be treated effectively by just prescribing pain analgesics. It is the sub-patterns that are responsible for the symptoms in the first place. Hence, it is by treating the surface symptoms and sub-surface patterns (underlying conditions) that many chronic diseases can be effectively treated with Chinese herbs.


What forms of Chinese Herbal Medicine do the practitioners prescribe at Balanced Life Health Care?


At Balanced Life Health Care we use three different forms of herbal medicine:


  • Granules / powders
  • Pills
  • Raw herbs


Can I take Chinese herbs while on other medications?


Generally it is very safe. However you should always inform both your Chinese Medicine doctor and your GP of any medication/herbs you are taking so that they can avoid certain known clashes between the two treatments. Another reason to inform both of medication you are taking is to encourage effective, efficient care. Some herbal medicines act very similarly to biochemical medicines and so to be taking both would be unnecessary. In addition it is recommended to wait 1-2 hours between taking herbal medicine and your medication.


Are the herbs safe?


Manufactured Chinese Herbal Medicine products imported into or sold in Australia are regulated by the Australian Therapeutic goods Administration (TGA). This regulation requires evidence of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) as well as other safety standards that must be met before these products can be made available. All of our patent pills used in Balanced Life Health Care are labeled AUSTL.


What is the difference between Chinese Herbal Medicine & Western Herbal Medicine?


Firstly, Chinese Herbal Medicine and Western Herbal Medicine are prescribed based on a different set of diagnostic tools; Western Herbal Medicine uses similar diagnostic tools and understanding of the body as your doctor but prescribes Western herbs for treatment. Often Western herbs are prescribed as single herbs. However, Chinese Herbal Medicine is based around a completely different set of diagnostic skills using pulse and tongue diagnosis as well as questioning. Chinese herbs are mostly prescribed in formulas of 5-15 herbs or groups of formulas.


Can pregnant women and children take Chinese herbs?


Chinese herbs can be taken by both pregnant women and Children, however we ask that if you are currently pregnant that you informing your practitioner so that the practitioner can adjust the formula accordingly.