In Western medical theory, all types of insomnia are rendered the same medical solution – pharmaceutical medications. Traditional Chinese Medical (TCM), on the other hand, needs to know what factor caused the insomnia since treatment approaches for particular types of insomnia vary. In order to determine what type of insomnia the patient has, the acupuncturist completes the patient’s medical history to know the symptoms of the insomnia so a proper diagnosis of the problem can be known. Most types of insomnia are emotionally based ones. In TCM many of the internal organs of the body can be connected with an emotion. The lungs connect with sorrow and sadness, the liver is connected to anger and frustration, kidneys can be associated to fear, the spleen is connected to worry and the heart connected to joy. For TCM, any excess in emotions, be it positive or negative, means an imbalance in the organs involved. Conversely, if the organ system is affected, an imbalance in emotions will also manifest. Meridians interconnect to all organ systems and any issue in one system will affect the others. TCM does not see the body organs in terms of Western medical perspective. When TCM refers to a certain organ, it refers to the organ function, not the organ itself.
The invisible but real forces of nature such as the chi, Jing, yin-yang, Shen and others are integrated into TCM belief. Jing is essence, chi or Qi is life force and Shen is spirit. A troubled or disturbed Shen manifests as insomnia. This situation is due to either yin energy deficiency or yang energy overabundance. TCM and acupuncture Orlando sees insomnia usually as an imbalance of liver and heart energy. Extreme emotions, especially anger, weakens the (yin – water energy of the) liver organ system. The weak energy of the liver enables the fire (yang) energy of the heart to rage without any water balance from the liver. The heart, the organ where Shen resides, becomes strong fire and this strong fire manifests as insomnia. Insomnia can also be the result of anxiety, which suppresses joy and causes Shen to be troubled resulting in interrupted sleep. Kidney problems caused by aging can also contribute to insomnia. Kidney yin usually becomes deficient as one ages causing heart fire to rage inordinately. Again, Shen becomes restless causing interrupted sleep. Excessive stress, in addition to eating unhealthy food can deplete spleen yin energy, which also affects the yang heart energy and can manifest as light sleep or trouble going to sleep. The acupuncturist can correct these deficiencies by applying thin needles at strategic sites and manipulating the needles to stimulate the body to remove blockages in the meridians, which allows the normal flow of chi and restores the body to harmony and the yin-yang energies to relative balance. The result will be an uninterrupted satisfying and sound sleep.