RA and Chinese Medicine
Those who suffer with RA often experience changing symptoms that occur during flare ups with indications of pain and inflammation of the joints followed by bouts of pain with Cold and stiff joints. RA can only develop when multiple energetic organ systems fail wot work optimally according to Chinese medicine making this a complicated autoimmune condition to treat. Because these organ-level root causes of imbalance do not develop overnight, this is considered a chronic condition even if you were just recently diagnosed with RA. To obtain results using natural therapies, multiple therapies must be used daily for an extended period of time. All energetic organ imbalances present should be addressed simultaneously. These self care modalities include acupressure, topical remedies with therapeutic essential oils, and herbal supplements.
- Apply the Earth Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Stomach 36
- Apply the Earth Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Spleen 9
- Apply the Earth Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Spleen 10
- Apply the Wood Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Liver 3
- Apply the Water Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Kidney 3
- Apply the Metal Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Large Intestine 4
- Apply the Fire Element Acupressure Stick to Acupressure Point Pericardium 6
Causes of RA in Chinese Medicine and Common Patterns of Imbalance
Dampness in Chinese medicine is often the result of Spleen Qi insufficiency. In this pattern, joints would be swollen, but would not feel hot and the areas affected would not look red. Damp-Cold patterns are most often seen during the initial onset of RA with symptoms of a feeling heaviness, restricted movement, and numbness. These symptoms would be relieved with the application of heat and are most prominent in the morning hours. Alternating fever and chills are often experienced during this stage. Consider our Topical Kidney Yang plaster along with our organic Restore the Middle Way formula!
Liver Qi Stagnation and Rheumatoid Arthritis
In Chinese medical theory, the Wood Element governs over the joints, and the Liver is part of the Wood Element. Additionally, as the Qi energy of the Liver stagnates the Liver begins to heat up and contributes to inflammation. This is a very common underlying imbalance with RA. Consider our organic Free and Easy Wanderer formula!
Yin Deficiency and Rheumatoid Arthritis
If left untreated or mismanaged, chronic pathogenic Heat from RA will begin to consume Yin fluids. Low grade chronic fever, night sweats, insomnia, thirst, and other indications of Yin Deficiency are common with this pattern of imbalance. Consider our organic Yin Valley formula!
As RA progresses and becomes chronic in nature, flare ups tend to manifest with swelling that is hot to the touch. During these episodes it is possible to experience fever and sweating. With this pattern, pain relief would be found with application of cold compresses to the joints; and while thirst may exist, there is not a great desire to drink fluids. This is often due to Liver Qi Stagnation resulting in Heat that combines with Damp Phlegm resulting from Spleen Qi Deficiency.
Late stages of RA present with joint deformation and stiffness. Pro-actively moving Blood and Qi using daily acupressure, herbs, and exercise can prevent full deformity. It is unlikely that RA can be reversed with natural therapy once joints become deformed, but further worsening of the condition can be avoided and joint pain can be addressed using these therapies.
Wei Qi Insufficiency and Rheumatoid Arthritis
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the Wei Qi is something akin to the immune system and circulates at the surface of the body and protects the body from external pathogens, such as Wind-Damp, in gaining access to internal levels of the body. If the Wei Qi is strong, the body’s defenses will prevent the original assault setting up an environment where RA is able to manifest. While Wind and Damp can also manifest internally, RA with a sudden onset suggests the influence of external Wind factors and Wei Qi insufficiencies. Consider our organic Enlightened Emperor formula!
RA vs. Osteoarthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) has many differences from osteoarthritis; for starters, it is often found in younger people than osteoarthritis, and symptoms of RA can manifest quickly. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), disease patterns that move quickly are typically due to the invasion of ‘Wind’ combined with other pathogenic influences; most commonly in the case of RA, Wind combines with Dampness causing stagnation and pain.
RA vs. Gout
Gout is another type of arthritis causing joint pain and is sometimes confused with RA. While gout is the result of the buildup of uric acid in the joints, RA is a result of a malfunction of the immune system. It is differentiated from RA as gout is more common in men, and RA is more common in women. Additionally, gout rarely affects the hands, whereas RA is often seen with inflammation in the joints of the hand.
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