Alternative medicine has come of age and no longer does its mention bring about a smirk or skeptical looks it once did. Today it is not uncommon for western doctors to suggest alternative medicine to complement their treatment. And, although they are often grouped together under the umbrella of CAM (complementary and alternative medicine), they’re actually different.
Both terms refer to treatments including herbs, massages, acupuncture which are out of the medical mainstream. But complementary medicine is when these therapies are used along with traditional Western medicine. Alternative medicine is when these approaches are used instead of traditional medicine.
Alternative medicine is non invasive tends to be less expensive and has been around for centuries. The philosophy behind alternative medicine is not merely to treat the problem but prevention along with healing of the body, mind and spirit and holistic wellbeing. While having fewer side effects it is critical to ascertain the authenticity and accreditation of the treatment.
Alternative medicine is a field which uses non-traditional methods and tools in place of conventional or Western practices. Alternative medicine can take various forms- naturopathy, Ayurveda, acupuncture, Chinese medicine, chiropractic medicine, homeopathy – and each one has its own USP
Naturopaths, treat patients using various types of alternative and holistic health modalities, such as herbs and nutritional therapy. The premise for naturopathy is diseases can be successfully treated or prevented without the use of drugs, by techniques such as, herbal medicine, organic food, control of diet, exercise and massage. It is an ancient and traditional science which integrates the physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of the body.
The work of a chiropractor is primarily related to the alignment of the musculoskeletal system, especially the spine and its vertebrae and should there be a misalignment, they would manually adjust this. The goal of chiropractic medicine is to ease pain, improve body function, and help your body to heal itself naturally.
An ancient Chinese method of healing, acupuncture involves sticking thin, needles into your skin and parts of your body. The intention is to help your body’s natural healing process take over and solve the ailment. Acupuncture has been known to be effective in treating back pain, depression infertility etc.
Ayurveda is amongst the world’s oldest medical treatments having started over 3,000 years in India and continues to be very popular in country. Ayurveda practitioners use traditional oil, herbs, yoga, meditation, special diets, and unique practices to treat illnesses. Amongst other ailments the treatment has been proven very effective for rheumatism, blood pressure, hormonal balance, inflammation and cholesterol.
Alternative medicine has been around for centuries in Asia and the far east and is now being readily accepted in the West. In Philippines there is also an act called TAMA (Traditional and Alternative Medicine Act) to encourage scientific research and promote traditional medial health for the benefit of the public.
Should you be inclined to assist others and have strong proclivity towards nature and natural methods a career in alternative medicine could be your calling. There exist various educational institutes that specialize in each of these fields. Be sure to check the credibility and accreditation of the institute as there are lots of unregulated schools which not should not be avoided but can be dangerous. In high school it is advisable you study biology, physics and chemistry to be able to get admission to college. It is also not uncommon for Colleges to offer dual degree programs wherein a person can study alternative medicine along with another heath science subject.
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