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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is one of the most complex, highly developed traditional healing theories in the world, rivaled in its scope only by Ayurveda . Several parts comprise TCM: acupuncture , traditional Chinese herbal medicine , dietary interventions, exercise systems such as Tai Chi and Chi Gung, and theories about architecture and interior decoration known as Feng Shui. Its principles are essentially Taoist in nature and encompass (in principle) every aspect of human existence.
In theory, TCM can address all possible physical, psychological, and spiritual problems. In the West, it is primarily used to treat long-term chronic conditions (eg, rheumatoid arthritis and menopausal symptoms ), as well as some acute conditions that are not life threatening (such as menstrual pain and colds and flus ). TCM is also widely used to promote wellness and prevent disease.
Acupuncture appears to be a relatively safe form of medicine as long as it is practiced appropriately. However, there are serious safety concerns regarding traditional Chinese herbal therapy. For more information see the individual articles.