It's Asian and Oriental (Chinese) Medicine Day!
Today is AOM day! AOM stands for Asian and Oriental Medicine, another term used to describe the group of modalities included in Chinese Medicine, which includes acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, Asian bodywork, Qi Gong, and Chinese nutritional therapy. AOM day is part of an effort designed to increase public awareness of the progress, promise, and benefits of acupuncture and Oriental medicine in the field of modern medicine.
According to a survey by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, an estimated 36% of U.S. adults use some form of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). A survey by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine found that approximately one in ten adults had received acupuncture at least one time and 60% said they would readily consider acupuncture as a potential treatment option. In addition, one in five (21%) of the total NCCAOM survey respondents reported that they had utilized some other form of Oriental medicine besides acupuncture, such as herbs or bodywork (e.g., shiatsu).
These studies and others like them clearly demonstrate that CAM therapies such as acupuncture and Oriental medicine are common practice in today’s health care system. They also support the need for consumers to be provided accurate and reliable information regarding their treatment options. The more consumers understand the efficacy and relevance of Chinese medicine, the more they will hopefully understand the rigorous training involved in becoming a certified practitioner, helping them steer themselves towards legitimate practitioners of the medicine, and away from sham acupuncturists who have received none to very minimal hours of training, such as medical doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists, and nurse practitioners; who have taken a 200 hour course (compared to a legitimate 4 year Chinese Medicine degree) and who are not really practicing Chinese Medicine, but only inserting needles based on western medicine philosophy of treating symptoms.
We are excited about the growth of our field, and look forward to increased campaigns in the future that will increase the awareness and accessibility of acupuncture and other Chinese medicine modalities for everyone!