Manic behavior according to Chinese Medicine

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Manic behavior can be the consequence of several so-called “patterns of disharmony” in Chinese Medicine.

Chinese Medicine sees the body as a system, not a sum of isolated parts. A "pattern" is when the system's harmony is disrupted, leading to symptoms or signs that something is wrong (like manic behavior here). It is similar to the concept of disease in Western Medicine but not quite: a Western disease can often be explained by several Chinese patterns and vice-versa.

A pattern often manifests itself in a combination of symptoms that, at first glance, do not seem necessarily related to each others. For instance here manic behavior is often associated with high fever, vomiting of blood and epistaxis in the pattern “Heat victorious agitating Blood”. As you will see below, we have in record two patterns that can cause manic behavior.

Once identified, patterns are treated using medicinal herbs, acupuncture, and other therapies. In the case of manic behavior we’ve identified two herbal formulas that may help treat patterns behind the symptom.

We’ve also selected below the two medicinal herbs that we think are most likely to help treat manic behavior.

The two "patterns of disharmony" that can cause manic behavior

In Chinese Medicine manic behavior is a symptom for 2 patterns that we have on record. Below is a small explanation for each of them with links for more details.

Heat victorious agitating Blood

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Wiry (Xian)

In addition to manic behavior, other symptoms associated with Heat victorious agitating Blood include high fever, vomiting of blood and epistaxis.

Heat victorious agitating Blood is often treated with Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Water Buffalo Horns - Shui Niu Jiao - as a key herb). Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that clear nutritive-level heat", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Treats severe fevers and Heat in the Blood system".

Read more about Heat victorious agitating Blood here

Rhubarb (Da Huang) is the king ingredient for Da Cheng Qi Tang, a formula used for Yang Excess or Full Yang

Yang Excess or Full Yang

Pulse type(s): Rapid (Shu), Full (Shi)

Tongue coating: Sticky coating, Yellow coating

Tongue color: Red

Yang is associated with Heat, activity and Dryness and these are the general symptoms when patients have Excess Yang. They become more specific depending on the Organ involved. This pattern is often caused by the Heat Pernicious Influence, internal damage from the Seven Emotions, the Stagnation of Qi or Blood, over-exposure to hot environments or diet.

In addition to manic behavior, other symptoms associated with Yang Excess or Full Yang include fever, red face and irritability.

Yang Excess or Full Yang is often treated with Da Cheng Qi Tang, a herbal formula made of 4 herbs (including Rhubarb - Da Huang - as a key herb). Da Cheng Qi Tang belongs to the category of "formulas that purge heat accumulation", which might be why it is often recommended for this pattern. Its main action as a formula is: "Purges Heat from the Stomach and Intestines".

Read more about Yang Excess or Full Yang here

Two herbal formulas that might help with manic behavior

Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang

Source date: 650 AD

Number of ingredients: 4 herbs

Key actions: Treats severe fevers and Heat in the Blood system. Removes Blood Stagnation.

Why might Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang help with manic behavior?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Heat victorious agitating Blood' of which manic behavior is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Heat Victorious Agitating Blood include high fever, vomiting of blood and epistaxis.

Read more about Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang here

Da Cheng Qi Tang

Source date: 220 AD

Number of ingredients: 4 herbs

Key actions: Purges Heat from the Stomach and Intestines. Relieves constipation.

Why might Da Cheng Qi Tang help with manic behavior?

Because it is a formula often recommended to treat the pattern 'Yang Excess or Full Yang' of which manic behavior is a symptom.

Other symptoms characteristic of Yang Excess Or Full Yang include fever, red face and irritability.

Read more about Da Cheng Qi Tang here

The two Chinese Medicinal herbs most likely to help treat manic behavior

Why might Rhubarb (Da Huang) help with manic behavior?

Because it is a key herb in Da Cheng Qi Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Yang Excess or Full Yang' (a pattern with manic behavior as a symptom)

Rhubarb is a Cold herb that tastes Bitter. It targets the Spleen, the Stomach, the Large intestine, the Liver and the Pericardium.

Its main actions are: Drains Excess Heat and eliminates Dampness, especially when in the Sunlight Yang stage. Cools the Blood and stops bleeding. Invigorates Blood, breaks up Stasis and relieves pain. Clears Heat and toxins from Excess. Applied topically for Hot sores and Blood Stasis.

Read more about Rhubarb here

Why might Water Buffalo Horn (Shui Niu Jiao) help with manic behavior?

Because it is a key herb in Xi Jiao Di Huang Tang, a herbal formula indicated to treat the pattern 'Heat victorious agitating Blood' (a pattern with manic behavior as a symptom)

Water Buffalo Horns is a Cold herb that tastes Bitter and Salty. It targets the Stomach, the Heart and the Liver.

Its main actions are: Cools the Blood, drains Fire and stops reckless movement of Blood. Clears Heat and Fire and stops tremors and convulsions. Cools Fire and expels toxins.

Read more about Water Buffalo Horns here