Our Services / Chinese Medicine

Chiropractic, Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine, Holistic Wellness & Functional Nutrition located in Portland, OR

Chinese Medicine services offered in Portland, OR

Classical Chinese medicine uses practices that have been in use for over five thousand years. Today, you can enjoy their benefits at Optimal Health in the Buckman neighborhood of Portland, Oregon. Dr. Scarlett Paau uses reliable Classical Chinese medicine techniques like acupuncture, herbal formulas, direct moxibustion, gentle bodywork, Gua Sha, and cupping to improve the flow of energy in your body. To schedule an appointment, call Optimal Health or book one online today.

Chinese Medicine Q & A

What is Chinese medicine?

Chinese medicine, also called Traditional Chinese medicine, is an alternative to the Western or conventional treatments that are more widespread in the United States. Treatments within Chinese medicine do not use pharmaceuticals and have been in practice for thousands of years. 

Chinese medicine relies on the idea of a type of energy that is the force of life, called qi. Your qi flows throughout your body along energy pathways called meridians. When there’s an obstruction along one of these pathways, it prevents the ongoing flow of energy, causing illness, pain, and other symptoms to occur. 

After a detailed chiropractic evaluation at Optimal Health, the team assesses your injuries or illness and recommends one or more treatments for your recovery plan. 

Who can benefit from Chinese medicine?

Chinese medicine, like Western medicine, can address a very wide range of ailments and symptoms. Treatments within Chinese medicine strive to alleviate your pain and other symptoms by restoring the energy balance in your body. 

You might benefit from Chinese medicine treatments if you experience:

  • Neck pain
  • Back pain 
  • Whiplash 
  • Arthritis
  • Infertility
  • Heart disease
  • Nausea
  • Digestive disorders
  • Diabetes and its complications
  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Epilepsy

Ahead of your treatment, the team examines the shape and color of your tongue, the color of your face, and other details that point to causes of imbalance within your body. 

Which treatments does Chinese medicine include?

Optimal Health offers a suite of long-trusted Chinese medicine techniques alongside chiropractic adjustments. They include:



Acupuncture is a technique that uses fine needles that are placed in your skin to control the flow of energy. A similar Japanese treatment called Teishin, which is noninvasive, is also available. 



Moxibustion is a type of therapy that is often combined with acupuncture. It involves burning mugwort leaves near your skin’s surface as a source of heat. This treatment is thought to strengthen your blood. 



Bodywork includes therapeutic techniques that manipulate or mobilize your body. It includes massage therapy and similar practices. 



Cupping is a technique that uses suction-causing cups against your skin to bring the blood to the surface, relieving inflammation.


Gua Sha

Gua Sha is a Chinese medicine practice that uses a smooth-edged tool to firmly stroke your skin. It promotes the flow of blood and lymphatic fluid. 



Qigong integrates movements and posture changes with breathing techniques. It also requires a high amount of focus. 

To learn more about Traditional Chinese medicine treatments that might benefit you, call Optimal Health or book an appointment online today. 

What is Classical Chinese medicine?

Treatments with Classical Chinese medicine do not induce adverse effects like pharmaceuticals do, and have been proven to be effective all over the world

Who can benefit from Chinese medicine?

Chinese medicine, like Western medicine, can address a very wide range of ailments and symptoms.  Chinese medicine strives to address the root causes of your diseases and symptoms instead of masking the symptoms. Pain is usually a result of the compensatory reactions of the body when fighting against pathogens, or correcting systemic imbalances. Treating the body as a whole system will not only alleviate your pain, but also assist your body to restore its healthy balance in the long term. 

Chinese medicine can benefit the following conditions:

  • Anxiety
  • Allergies (acute and chronic)
  • Arthritis
  • Asthma
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Back pain
  • Bacterial, fungal, and viral infections (acute and chronic)
  • Cardiovascular disorders
  • Cholelithiasis (Gallstone)
  • Cholecystitis
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)
  • Cirrhosis
  • Diabetes
  • Dermatological disorders
  • Depression
  • Digestive disorders
  • Epilepsy
  • Erysipelas
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Hepatitis
  • Infections (Bacterial / Viral / Fungal)
  • Infertility
  • Insomnia
  • Irritable bowel disease (IBD)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Hepatitis
  • Jaundice
  • Oncological support
  • Pediatric disorders
  • Postoperative symptoms
  • Pulmonary disorders
  • Menstrual disorders
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Neck pain
  • Sciatica
  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)
  • HEENT (head-eye-ear-nose-throat) conditions
  • Tinnitus
  • Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMJ)
  • Urinary conditions

Ahead of your treatment, Dr. Scarlett Paau completes a full review of your chief complaints, your body’s systems, examines your pulse, the shape and color of your tongue, your complexion, and all of the other physical conditions that are associated with the current conditions of your body. 

Which treatments does Classical Chinese medicine include?

Optimal Health offers a suite of long-trusted Classical Chinese medicine techniques alongside chiropractic adjustments. They include:

Classical Chinese Medicine – Oku Acupuncture & Herbs (okuhealth.com)

Japanese Gentle Techniques – Oku Acupuncture & Herbs (okuhealth.com)

Non-invasive needling:

There is a non-invasive needling technique called Shonishin (小兒鍼), which does not require using a needle to puncture through the skin surface.  This is a safe, painless, soothing modality that is especially suitable for young folks and/or sensitive people.  Children respond to this modality very well.  They often report such treatments are fun, comfortable, and soothing.  By gently touching the skin with a silver (also gold and copper) tool with active engagement of the intention and perception of the practitioner (sometimes also involves that of the client), Qi of the body is guided to its natural passages and resumes its healthy flow.  The effects are instant.  Frequent tuning of Qi introduces healthier Qi flow patterns and brings about significant positive results in the long run.  Nobody knows exactly how it works but we do know that it works wonderfully.

Qi Gong & Tai Ji – Oku Acupuncture & Herbs (okuhealth.com)

How does Acupuncture work?

From a Chinese medical perspective, the blueprint of all living beings is outlined at the very moment of their conception – when an egg fertilized by a sperm.  This is the beginning of our body’s growth and maturation.  Billions and billions of base DNA codes are copied and sent out to become who we are.  The passages of code transportation are called “channels” and “vessels” Jing Mai (經脈) by the ancient Chinese.  These passages circulate the body at different depth and regions, governing specific functions of our systems, working together to maintain the balance of our existence.  At different stages of our life, the strengths of the channels differ.  We fall ill when the energies of these channels become congested or deficient.  Too much or too little would both cause problems.

Just like the electromagnetic fields of our planet, due to the natural movements and interactions of our internal energies (or life force), our body’s channels naturally create electromagnetic fields that respond to conductive metal needles.  The ancient Chinese developed many styles of acupuncture to tune the body’s electromagnetic fields.  This method is still in use today because it has been proven to be effective.

 (please visit okuhealth.com for details of these modalities)

To learn more about Classical Chinese medicine treatments that might benefit you, call Optimal Health or book an appointment online today.