The Main Differences Between Western and Chinese Medicine

Chinese medicine is a holistic and age old medicine system which was first found and established in China many many centuries ago. Even today, several practices and treatment methods of Chinese medicine system are still being followed and rather preferred over Western medicine.

The believers of the ancient Chinese medicine often avoid following western medicine ways and treatment due to the many differences between these two categories or systems.

There are many ways in which western medicine and Chinese medicine are different from one another. Not only are they different in their approach towards dealing with a certain medical condition but are also different philosophically or conceptually. The following are the main points of differences between western and Chinese medicine.

differences between western and chinese medicine

  • Western medicine considers body as a machine where the heart is the pump, brain is the computer and the bladder and kidneys are the plumbing. The western doctors are trained to repair our machines so their approach and thinking is mostly reactive. On the other hand, Chinese medicine views sickness in a different light. It questions why the body succumbs to infections and bacteria and why its immune system sometimes fails. The accumulation of knowledge of Chinese medicine system is unequaled.
  • When it comes to gastrointestinal issues, western medicine provides three major solutions which include anti-ulcer drugs, over the counter remedies and surgery. On the other hand, Chinese medicine system has numerous ways to counter the gastrointestinal issues. It offers several herbal formulas to enhance the digestive system’s normal function. Rather than blocking the symptoms, it believes in concentrating on the root cause so that the symptoms don’t reappear.
  • Western medicine is often more fast and shows results more rapidly as compare to Chinese medicine. Chinese medicine has herbal formulas which are gentle and offer a steady rate of improvement.
  • Chinese medicine recognizes several types of cold and does not label them all under one category. It thus provides numerous solutions to deal with each type of cold. On the other hand, in Western medicine, there is a set way to treat the cold through over the counter medicines and this treatment mostly works to treat all different types of colds.
  • Chinese herbal medicine believes in strengthening our natural energy whereas this concept cannot be found in western medicine. There are many formulas according to Chinese medicine which help to rebuild our natural energy as we grow old and begin to lose it. In this medicine system, the body’s energy and flow is targeted to treat different conditions whereas in the case of western medicine, the focus is on treating the organ or part under attack by infections or allergens.
  • Western medicine considers a disease to be an attacking entity which must be destroyed and powerful antibiotics are used to wipe out the germs. In the case of Chinese medicine however, only herbs, plants, leaves and other natural ingredients are used to treat different conditions. In western medicine, there is lesser emphasis on overall good health, as opposed to Chinese medicine.