By Sherri Duncan
It isn’t often that you hear of children receiving acupuncture treatment for common childhood ailments. Yet it would be a mistake to assume that Chinese Medicine didn’t have a plethora of tools and techniques for treating young ones and maintaining optimum health. Sometimes Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture are thought to be the same thing, yet Chinese Medicine as a system of medicine encompasses a wide range of disciplines and practices with Acupuncture being just one of them.
I often get asked if we have many children come to clinic for treatment from our Acupuncture team. The truth is – not really. We do however have a regular client base of young people who receive Chinese medicine infant massage or xiao er tui na. Tui Na is a non-invasive, gentle massage therapy that is based on the same system of medicine that Acupuncture uses for diagnosis and treatment. The only difference is that Acupuncture uses needles to stimulate a healing response and Tui Na uses massage and acupressure instead.
So it would come as no surprise that for centuries, Chinese Medicine practitioners have been using paediatric Tui Na to treat children including babies and toddlers. According to Dr Fan Ya Li, a Chinese medicine doctor who specialises in Paediatric Tui Na and authored Chinese Paediatric Massage Therapy, “parents who have mastered the basic infant massage skills are as good as a cabinet full of medicine”.
Sherri Duncan, our Perth Clinic Manager, spoke to one of her clients Moi Sok Chong who booked her son in for Tui Na treatments. Moi Sok shares her experiences and why she chooses to use Tui Na with her child.
What was the main reason for booking your child/infant into a Tui Na session?
I have been doing massage on my son right before bed to assist him with sleep – it has been working so I thought that it would be beneficial to book him in with a Tui Na practitioner to see how many changes he experiences. He also has Sinus issues which I have been unable to find the cure even after going to see my local GP.
What other forms of healing have you tried with your child?
I have gone to the GP which I found to be very disheartening as the doctor couldn’t pinpoint the issues my son is having. On my own, I have also been trying to change his diet to assist with this sinus issues which have helped to some degree but I am hoping that Tui Na will help with this.
What do you believe your child will benefit from the session?
I believe massage is a very calming way to slow down children. I also would love to be able to assist him with his sinus issues and also help with regulating his sleeping pattern.
Based on your experience, would refer a friend or family member to the clinic? Would you rebook your child into a Tui Na Session in the future?
Most definitely. I have already re-booked my son as well as myself!
What paediatric issues is Tui Na useful for?
Common illnesses like the common cold, cough, fever, vomiting, low appetite, diarrhoea, constipation, abdominal pain and bedwetting can all be supported with simple Tui Na techniques. Obviously, a visit to the doctor might be needed and Tui Na can then be used to assist with recovery and as an adjunct to the conventional treatment plan.
At Wellnation Clinics, we have Tui Na running from early July in most clinics*. Children under 13 get any treatment for $10 which is a perfect reason to give your little one some TLC.
Curious to try it yourself? Treatments start at $25 and are well worth it! See availability
*Please check with your local clinic to confirm availabilityThis article provides general information and is not intended to constitute advice. All care is taken to ensure information is accurate and relevant. Please see your Practitioner for health treatments and advice.