Stick out your tongue, please.
An acupuncturist's office is one place you will be encouraged to stick out your tongue. By observing the color, shape, coat and general state of the tongue, things can be learned about conditions both external and internal.
In Chinese Medicine, the tongue is called the "flower of the heart" and things can also be learned about the state of blood and the heart from observation of this
organ. We can observe the tongue in a way it is impossible to see the liver or kidneys but we can learn about those organs from stories the tongue tells.
Chinese Medicine practitioners use a different kind of pulse taking from Western doctors. We consider the rate and strength but we are also looking for a whole lot more. Pulse taking is art developed by taking many, many pulses and actually growing more dendrites in the tips of the fingers through practice. We compare the harmony of the body from left to right and within the body's organ and functional activity. Pulses are taken in three positions and more than one depth.