So I have been taking that Chinese medicine I bought for almost a week now. I have a good feeling about it working, but I everyone tells me that Chinese medicine is really slow and takes about a month to start working. Yay. Chinese medicine tastes so bad but I’ll live.
On Monday I went to a nearby hospital to talk to their Chinese medicine doctors. I paid 15 Kuai and got a full examination which consisted of the doctor feeling my pressure points, checking my pulse and tongue, and asking me a bunch of questions. I guess my body has too much cold and wind, so I’m guessing I need fire and dampness to offset it. At the hospital I also experienced acupuncture and fire-cupping.
Acupuncture is the most well known to westerners out of these two. They do exactly what you’ve seen: put needles into you. The needles don’t go deep and they don’t hurt. They also do not put as many in you (at least your first time) as you might have seen on TV. They put about 6 needles in me, all into the spots nearby where my pain was. On two of the needles in my back, they gave me some electricity. That was almost the most uncomfortable part, just pulsing electricity through my body for about 20 mins. The electricity isn’t harmful in any way, but it still feels weird. The most uncomfortable part about acupuncture is that they stick these little metal balls into your ear and they hurt! I had to leave these torturous things in for the whole day and night.
Fire cupping is where the doctor creates a vacuum in a bunch of small glass cups and suctions them to your back. This is supposed to get your qi or energy/blood moving and draw diseases out of your body. The cups are left on for 5 minutes and when they are taken off, they leave marks that last for about a week or two, depending on how much poison your body has in it. If you have a lot, the marks will be dark red, almost like bad bruises and will take a long time to go away. If you are “healthy,” apparently as I am, the marks will be very light and go away quickly.
After having experienced both of these treatments twice already and am set to have another today, I can say that I am still not sure if they work well or not. My neck and back have since stopped hurting, and I feel a little better, but I don’t have some euphoric feeling that others have claimed to feel. I am most hopeful that these treatments with the actual Chinese medicine that I have to drink can make whatever is causing my allergies (probably bad digestive system or hormones) go away!