Alternative Therapies and Approaches to Healing the Body
Alternative therapies and approaches to healing the body encompass a range of treatments, such as herbal medicines, meditation, yoga, acupuncture, chiropractic care, nutritional supplements, reflexology and many others. They are based on an ancient belief system called Ayurveda which emphasizes balance between mind, body and spirit for optimal wellbeing.
These therapies can be combined with conventional medical treatment to aid healing or reduce side effects from standard medical care. You may also use them on their own to relieve symptoms or enhance overall wellbeing.
Acupuncture, for instance, utilizes various techniques to boost your immune system and treat pain and other symptoms. However, it’s essential that you consult your primary healthcare provider before beginning this therapy as it may interfere with medications or other health conditions.
Reiki is an energy therapy in which a practitioner channels their healing energy through your hands to promote healing. While some studies have demonstrated its potential benefit for certain musculoskeletal issues, more research needs to be done before we can definitively say whether it works for everyone.
Some energy-based healing therapies target the levels of energy within your body (biofields) or from external sources like electromagnetic fields. These include sound healing, magnetic field therapy and light and energy therapy.
Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) refers to a range of therapies including herbal medicines, dietary supplements, meditation, chiropractic adjustments, and hypnosis. Some people group these methods together under the umbrella term of complementary medicine.
The National Institutes of Health define Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) as a group of medical practices and products not typically included within traditional or conventional medicine.
Acupuncture is an alternative medicine that utilizes needles to stimulate your body’s natural ability to heal itself. It has proven successful in healing from diseases like back pain and osteoarthritis.
Other types of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) include chiropractic, massage, and naturopathic medicine. These practices have their roots in ancient healing traditions across Asia, China, Tibet, Africa, and North America.
Some of these treatments can be combined with conventional medical therapy, yet they are not widely accepted as standard practice by health experts. Furthermore, they have not been studied with the same level of rigorousness as more established medical approaches.
Conventional medicine, on the other hand, is a system of health care that prioritizes treating symptoms and diseases with drugs, surgery, and radiation. It’s typically practiced by healthcare professionals with medical degrees such as an M.D. or D.O. It’s also known as Western medicine, mainstream medicine or orthodox medicine.
In the United States, approximately 40% of adults reported using some form of alternative medicine in the past year. Of this group, 45% used chiropractic, lifestyle diets, relaxation techniques, exercise/movement or spiritual healing for health conditions like chronic pain or anxiety.