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Hot and Cold

Many times when I see a patient I tell them that they are running hot or running cold, or I say that they have Heat in such and such place. And invariably when I say this they look at me like I just said that some ancient god has it out for them or I'm insane. So, I'm going to explain the concept of Hot and Cold in Chinese medical theory.


Everything in Chinese medicine from where and how we chose our acupuncture points to what herbs we put in the formula hinges on 4 basic dualities: Hot and Cold, Excess and Deficient, Inside or Outside, and Yin or Yang. The Yin and Yang thing actually creates the other three. Yin is everything cold and inside but not always deficient. Yang is everything hot and outside but not always excess.


There are two kinds of hot and two kinds of cold. They are excess or deficient. So how do I tell the difference? I will ask you the quality of the heat/cold and if anything helps. I will also ask you how long you have had it. If let's say that your burning up and doing cold stuff makes it better and you have only had this for about a week then I would say you have an excess heat condition. The same goes for cold. However, if you're siding at room temperature and you are freezing or burning and this has been going on for a while then you have a deficient condition. That is only part of the story. I still need to know more so I can actually treat you.


So what about if you are alternating hot and cold and it is very new like within the last couple of days. Well my friend, you have a cold, or what we in the acupuncture world call a wind. If there is more cold than hot you have a wind cold. If there is more hot than cold then you have a wind heat. I would ask you some follow up questions to confirm the diagnosis and then treat.


Herbs are also selected and discounted from the formula based on hot and cold. If you have a hot condition, I am not going to give you a warming herb because that would be adding fire to fire. That's just stupid. The same goes for any sort of cold condition.


So when you see me for an acupuncture treatment or for herbs it is extremely important that you tell me everything and give good answers to the questions that I ask that way everything works and you get your money's worth.


So if you have any questions or you would like an acupuncture treatment, please give me a call. Talk to you soon.

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