Common Ailments

What is pain management?

Pain management is a treatment process that addresses and relieves pain in the body. Different strategies are employed with the aim of reducing pain and regaining functionality.

Common types of pain

Acute Pain vs Chronic Pain

Acute pain is any pain condition that is present for less than 3 months, after which it is considered as chronic pain if the pain persists longer than 3 months.

Musculo-Skeletal Pain

Musculoskeletal pain is often caused by an injury to the bones, joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments as a result of accidents such as falls, fractures, sprains, or overuse.

Common musculoskeletal pain includes: Sports injuries: Tennis elbow, ankle sprains, plantar fasciitis, and post fracture pain.

Other pain: Upper and lower back pain, knee pain, heel pain, shoulder/arm pain, neck pain

Neuropathic Pain or Nerve Pain

Definition: Neuropathic pain is a pain condition due to damage to the nervous system. Nerve endings send pain signals to the brain as a result of damage to the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) or peripheral nervous system (nerves outside the brain and spinal cord).

Common neuropathic pain includes:

Sciatica (Low back pain with slipped intervertebral disc and associated leg pain), Trigeminal neuralgia (facial pain), Post-herpetic neuralgia (persistent pain following shingles), headaches and migraines.

TCM approach to pain

What Causes Pain?

In TCM theories, factors that causes pain includes coldness, heat, blood stasis, phlegm stasis and stagnation of Qi. Hence, treatment methods to address the root cause, such as expelling cold, expelling heat, improving blood flow, removal of phlegm and improving flow of Qi are utilized.

Treatments Available For Your Pain

Our qualified physicians will be able to do a one-to-one consultation to better understand your medical condition and to advise the best treatment for you. Depending on individual’s medical condition, physicians will use common treatment methods include oral medication, acupuncture and tuina to address the root cause of your pain.

Am I suitable for TCM treatment and how long should the treatment be done for effective results?

TCM treatment methods are generally safe and suitable for majority of the public. Rest assured that the herbal medicine and medical equipment we use has undergone stringent quality checks and are safe for use. The duration of each treatment varies from person to person according to the severity of your condition under the advice of our physicians. For more information, do make an appointment with our TCM clinics for a more in-depth consultation.

What is stroke?

Stroke is an acute cerebrovascular disease. In Singapore, stroke is associated with significant morbidity and high mortality. It is the third leading cause of death and is the number one cause of adult disability.

Signs and Symptoms

The symptoms include headache, sudden collapse, losing consciousness, mouth askew and slurred speech. One side of the body may become paralyzed which might result in numbness, weakness and inability to move.

Do Not Ignore Early Signs And Symptoms Of Stroke

If you suddenly experience difficulty in speaking, an undue headache, and blurred vision or even feel dizzy, weak and numbness in limbs, you should go to the hospital immediately for medical treatment.

Stroke requires urgent care! The earlier the treatment, the greater is the chance for recovery. Timely and effective treatment can significantly reduce the repercussions of stroke.

Good Efficacy of Traditional Chinese Medicine Treatments

  • Chinese Medicine:

    It can restore and promote blood circulation. It can also nourish the liver and kidney functions, strengthen the bones and muscles.

  • Acupuncture:

    Acupoints on the scalp of the head and the affected side of the body are stimulated to clear the Qì and blood stagnation. Electrical stimulation of acupuncture points can improve the use of weakened limbs and relax the stiff muscles and joints. Acupuncture also helps to calm the mind, improve the quality of sleep and relieve the emotional stress of stroke patients.

  • Chinese Therapeutic Massage (Tuīná):

    The use of hand techniques can relieve tendons and muscle spasms, improve blood and lymphatic circulation and aid in the recovery of injured tissue.

  • Cupping:

    Suction of the cups can improve the circulation of Qì and blood. It can help to relax the ligaments. Cupping is also done to help remove phlegm in some stroke patients.

Our team of qualified and experienced physicians will diagnose your symptoms and overall body constitution before recommending an effective and personalised treatment plan.

What causes stroke?

The brain is an organ that serves as the control centre of the nervous system and other organs of the body. The brain needs a constant supply of blood, which carries the oxygen and nutrients it needs to function.

A stroke occurs when one of these arteries to the brain is either blocked or burst. Brain cells start to die as part of the brain is deprived of oxygen and nutrients.

Ischemic stroke is the most common type of stroke. There are two types of ischemic stroke:

  • Embolic Stroke:

    A blood clot or plaque fragment in other parts of the body may dislodge and migrate through the arteries leading to the brain, blocking a blood vessel and causing stroke.

  • Thrombotic Stroke:

    This occurs when a blood clot forms inside an artery that supplies blood to the brain, interrupting blood flow and causing a stroke.

Risk factors of stroke

  1. High blood pressure

  2. High blood cholesterol

  3. Heart disease

  4. Diabetes

  5. Obesity

  6. Smoking

  7. Diet

  8. Excessive drinking, agitation and excessive stress

Ways to prevent stroke

  1. Regular medical check-up

    People above 35 years old should have their blood pressure checked once a year, blood sugar and cholesterol levels every 3 years. People above 45 years old should have a detailed medical check-up annually. If the result is abnormal, one should follow the doctor’s instructions and adhere to the recommended treatment.

  2. Healthy diet

    Low salt, low fat, low cholesterol diet and avoid highly processed foods. Increase intake of soy products, vegetables and fruits.

  3. Reduce predisposing factors of stroke

    Avoid excessive excitement, rejoicing, anger, fatigue, excessive force and etc.

  4. Avoid forced defecation to prevent a sharp rise of blood pressure

  5. Ensure adequate sleep

  6. Exercise adequately and maintain an ideal body weight

Western and oriental approach towards stroke

Acupuncture and Physiotherapy

Acupuncture and physiotherapy are effective complementary treatments for functional recovery. Stroke patients can regain the ability to participate in activities of daily living. Patients in acute stroke stage should promptly receive acupuncture and physiotherapy.

Stroke Rehab Program by PhysioWorks

Physiotherapists can improve your strength and function. We have the techniques to promote normal movement. Using the theory of Neuroplasticity, we re-educate the body to move more normally. Patients re-learn how to balance well and walk again. The lack of treatment can worsen the condition. Education of caregivers in appropriate transfer methods is essential to quick recovery.

Persistence is the key to speedy recovery

Depending on the severity of the stroke, the patient’s age and physical condition, the rehabilitation and treatment duration of each stroke patient varies. In order to have a speedy recovery, the patient needs to be confident, co-operates with the doctor and persists in treatments.

Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation

Using the theory of Neuroplasticity, our therapists can help to improve your strength and function. Patients can re-learn how to balance well and walk again.

Physiotherapy for stroke is mainly divided into initial and recovery stages:

  1. Initial stage:

    Examples: proper bed positioning, turning the patient’s body every 2 hours, joint passive range of movement exercises. These treatments will lower the chance of complications such as joint stiffness, muscle contracture, pressure sore and pneumonia in the initial stage of stroke.

  2. Recovery stage:

    Examples: movement facilitation, stretching, strengthening, balancing exercises, movement pattern re-education and gait re-training. These exercises will help to restore the functional ability of the affected limbs. Patients can regain maximum independence of quality life.

Please visit PhysioWorks website for more details.

Traditional Chinese Medicine Theory of Rheumatism

Rheumatism is referred to as Bì Zhèng in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) theory. The blockage of the meridians caused by wind, cold, dampness, trauma and strain cause the stagnation of Qì and blood, resulting in pain to the affected areas.

Good Efficacy of Traditional Chinese Medicine Treatments

Chinese medicine, acupuncture, cupping and Chinese therapeutic massage (Tuīná) are effective treatments used to treat rheumatism and may sometimes even produce immediate results.

  • Chinese Medicine: Chinese herbs can clear the stagnation in the meridians by expelling wind, cold, and dampness. It promote the blood circulation and hence help to ease the pain. It can also nourish the liver and kidney functions, strengthen the bones and ligaments.
  • Acupuncture: The acupoints found on the body are stimulated to clear the Qì and blood stagnation in the meridians. It can also strengthen the body, relax the muscles and alleviate pain. Scientific research has shown that acupuncture can relive pain by stimulating the release of chemical substances such as endorphins, our body’s natural painkillers.
  • Chinese Therapeutic Massage (Tuīná): The use of hand techniques can relieve tendons and muscle spasms, improve blood and lymphatic circulation and aid in the recovery of injured tissue.
  • Cupping: Suction of the cups can improve the circulation of Qì and blood. It can help to relax the ligaments, expel the wind, cold and dampness in the meridian as well as to reduce swelling.

What causes Rheumatism?

The aging and degeneration of our human tissues, coupled with the exposure to external factors such as wind, cold, dampness, trauma and injuries are the main causes of rheumatism.

  • Exposure to wind, cold and dampness such as:
    • Working long hours in air-conditioned room
    • Habitually bathing in cold water
  • Chronic fatigue due to daily work postures exposes the bones and joint ligaments to a prolonged state of tension
  • Sleeping on an inappropriate pillow may cause neck and shoulder pain
  • Exposure to cold during postpartum or menstrual period
  • Exercising inappropriately or ligament injury
  • Degeneration of the bones and joints due to overbearing of the body weight caused by obesity

Signs and Symptoms

Rheumatism usually affects neck, shoulder, back, waist and limbs. Pain, swelling, joint deformities, movement disorders and other symptoms may appear in the affected areas. Most symptoms are recurrent.

Prevention Should Start From Young

Human bones, joints, muscles and ligaments can be likened to parts of a machine, through years of use, wear and tear is inevitable. However, a conscious effort to avoid injuries and diligently protecting our bones and joints can slow down the process of wear and tear.

  • Avoid wind, cold and dampness:
    • Take warm showers and towel dry
    • Wipe dry after exercising and change out of damp clothes to avoid the cold
    • Avoid being blown directly by the air conditioner or fan
    • Always keep warm when working in air-conditioned rooms
  • Correct bad habits and posture while working at a desk
  • Avoid chronic fatigue by regularly changing one’s body posture and resting adequately
  • Have sufficient exercise to strengthen body and increase one’s resistance to diseases
  • Choosing the right pillow: suitable hardness, good permeability, appropriate height of about 10-15 cm, able to cushion the neck and support the physiological curvature of the cervical spine
  • Avoid injury during sports and work by taking necessary precautions

Dangers of Rheumatism

Rheumatism, if not treated in time, would not only cause enormous suffering but also severe bone and joint deformities and muscle atrophy leading to reduced mobility or disability. Early diagnosis and treatment is the key in the prevention of further deterioration and development of rheumatism.

Child Massage & Related Pediatric Problems

Children with poor immunity tend to fall sick easily, according to Traditional Chinese Medicine theory. Child Massage Therapy is a safe and gentle way to improve a child’s body constitution and immunity. Clinical investigations in China have shown that Child Massage Therapy can help in the treatment and prevention of paediatric diseases, especially recurrent respiratory tract infection. Apparently, treatment efficacy is more significant in younger children.

What Can Child Massage Therapy Treat?

  • Respiratory System:

    Common Flu, Fever, Cough, Asthma, Sensitive Nose

  • Digestive System:

    Diarrhoea, Constipation, Poor Appetite, Stomach-ache, Vomiting

  • Others:

    Bed-Wetting, Colic, Stiff Neck, Myopia, Poor Growth & Development

What are the benefits?

  • Improves immunity
  • Boosts growth and development
  • Aids in digestion and stimulates appetite
  • Promotes muscle and bone growth
  • Relieves stress and improves quality of sleep
  • Improves blood circulation
  • Prevents myopia and improves vision

Common Concerns

Q: Is this treatment suitable for my child?
A: Our therapy sessions are suitable for any child below the age of 12.

Q: How many sessions does my child need?
A: The number of massage sessions required varies accordingly to your child’s age and medical condition.

Q: What is the duration of each session?
A: Age of Child:

  • Below Age of 1 – 10 to 15 minutes
  • 1-12 Years Old – 20 minutes