In Chinese Herbal Therapy, herbs are used to increase energy, improve breathing, improve digestion and deepen sleep.
They can also be used to treat many chronic pain conditions. One aspect of women’s health where herbs can be extremely beneficial is both for infertility and annoying symptoms related to menopause like dryness or hot flashes.
Herbal therapy, after dietary therapy, is perhaps the most widely used Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treatment modality. TCM relies on herbal therapies both for the treatment of illness and in the optimization of health and prevention of disease.
Although there are literally thousands of traditional herbal formulas for just about every condition imaginable, a formula is almost always modified by the practitioner to suit the subtle nuances of the condition and constitution of the patient, making each formulation highly individualized.
Chinese medicinal formulations are prepared in a number of different ways for Chinese Herbal Therapy:
- Chinese herbal decoctions. The most traditional method of preparing an herbal formula in China, decoctions can involve lengthy preparation and result in “teas” infamous for their strong taste and aroma. For these reasons decoctions are not as popular or as widely used in the west.
- Herbal powders, which can be mixed with hot water to make a tea, are more convenient to prepare and use, and are not as pungent as traditional decoctions.
- Chinese Patent Formulas are pre-made herbal formulations in pill or tablet form and are perhaps the most widely used form of Chinese herbal medicine outside of China.
- Syrups, which are soothing preparations for coughs and sore throat, are also a convenient way to administer herbal formulations to children.
- Liniments, salves, compresses and plasters, which are used for external application.