As parents, the anxiety and stress we feel when our children are sick sometimes feels insurmountable. I can honestly say, as a parent, the levels of anxiety I felt when my children were sick was overwhelming. The coughs, earaches and fevers that took days to break. How many countless sleepless nights keeping watch on the sick little ones did I have? As a mother, I didn’t feel well equipped to deal with the anxiety and feeling of helplessness I felt when it came to my children being unwell.
In 2011 I was asked to run the pediatrics clinic at Yayasan Bumi Sehat in Bali when all the other practitioners were on leave. My response was ‘I have no experience treating children’. Robin, the founder of the clinic said ‘well you have to start somewhere’. With trepidation, I started treating children. And what a delight it was. The fantastic thing about children is their response to treatment is usually so quick. I ran into one of the mums of a baby I had treated – we didn’t see her at the clinic again after the first treatment. She said they didn’t need to come back as the baby had completely recovered after the one treatment. Chinese medicine and other oriental therapies can be very effective in treating childhood diseases.
There are a number of different options for treatment including cupping and acupuncture. However it is Shonishin (show/nee/shin) that I wanted to introduce as it a relatively unknown style of treatment that is gaining more popularity in Germany, US and Australia.
Shonishin was developed in the 1900’s in Japan as an alternative to acupuncture. It literally means pediatric acupuncture. However rather than needles, tools are used to rhythmically stroke the skin and tap areas of the body to stimulate energy pathways (meridians) and acupuncture points. It is used as a treatment for sickness, but also as a preventative measure to enhance the constitution, immunity and well being of the child as well as address health concerns.
“With regular healthcare, parents and children may begin to see that the rhythm of caring for oneself is an ongoing process continuing throughout life. Shonishin, like Chinese Medicine, emphasizes well being and the care it takes to maintain that state.” Raven Lang
Shonishin feels great, it relaxes the body and children respond positively to the treatment. The beauty of it is its roots are steeped in the tradition of preventative care – wellness care instead of sickness care. Treatments for preventative care can address health concerns that may be caused by life style factors, climatic changes, food and/or emotions. My children would often remind me to give them their Shonishin treatments!