Wind
A major cause of disease

In Chinese medicine, Wind is one of the most virulent external causes of disease.

It takes many forms. At one end of the spectrum, air passes gently through leaves. At the other end, you get the destructive force of a hurricane.

In the same way, in Chinese medicine Wind symptoms take many forms, from mild to very serious.

One thing is common to them all: movement.

For example, you may find yourself moving involuntarily, as in

  • shivering or 
  • grinding your teeth, or 
  • you get restless and 
  • find the symptoms of your disease keep changing.
  • More severely, people who have epilepsy get seizures that 'shake and rattle' their bodies.
  • Wind is also the harbinger of most diseases that Western medicine describes as being of bacterial or viral origin.

Other Ways to Get Wind!

It also arises in the body from other sources.

Although it is tempting to regard Wind as being purely external, if we say that an individual has had an invasion of Wind, it is the individual’s reaction to the invader that we are describing, not that we would be expecting a windy day to have been the trigger. This it might or might not have been.

In other words, whether or not the patient had been exposed to the wind as it blows the leaves on trees, or modern equivalents of wind like

  • air-conditioning
  • a blow heater
  • an open window in a fast car
  • sitting in a draft
  • someone sneezing
  • a draft, (all being varieties  of 'wind')

he would be described as having a Wind invasion if his symptoms included enough of the following:

External Wind Invasion

  • Symptoms that change or alter rapidly or from one minute to the next: pain moves from place to place in the body
  • Muscles or joints are sore
  • Movement is limited, usually because of stiffness
  • Headache
  • Nasal obstruction
  • Itchy throat
  • Puffy face
  • Dizziness
  • Sweating
  • Nasal mucus
  • Runny eyes (lachrymation)
  • Shivering, twitching, symptoms that move around, spasms
  • Lungs often affected
  • May sweat unexpectedly
  • Pulse: floating, often a little fast

Internal Wind

Please note that there is also a condition called ‘internal wind’ which arises from what is called internal deficiency.

Although there are some similarities to external wind, internal wind arises not from one of the external causes of disease but from an internal deficiency, such as deficient Blood, or Yin Deficiency.

However, it can be triggered by exposure to one of the external causes of disease.

Internal Wind can be harder to treat and to cure. Though occurring at all ages, it is more common as you grow older.

For example the slight tremor that many older people have, especially if they are nervous, is an example of Internal Wind.

Read about one example at Liver Wind.

Wind Combines with other factors

Very often, Wind invades in company with Cold (Wind-Cold) or Heat (Wind-Heat).

After the attack, what then?

Your body expends a fair amount of energy combating the Wind. After the Wind attack, you may be left with this.


Find an Acupuncturist!

If you live in the Edinburgh area of Scotland, where the author of this site (and of the books described below) works, click on Edinburgh Acupuncturist.

If you live elsewhere, click on BAcC.


Jonathan Clogstoun-Willmott Books

Please note! The Kindle editions are less easy to read! Although the paper editions cost more, they are much easier to read and to refer back and forth to the contents and index. But ... there is no paper edition of Yang Deficiency as yet.

Here are some of the books Jonathan has written:

Qi Stagnation - Signs of Stress

Yin Deficiency - Burnout and Exhaustion

Yang Deficiency - Get Your Fire Burning Again!

Western Astrology and Chinese Medicine



3000 years of Chinese being stressed, and at last, here's a book showing how all that experience can help you!

By the author of this website, it explains in simple English how to use stress to improve and enhance your life.

For the Latest Reviews of 'Qi Stagnation', click here!

NB You can also order 'Qi Stagnation - Signs of Stress' from your bookseller.



Didn't find what you were looking for? Use this search feature:


Click Here for Acupuncture Points on Facebook!