Alternative medicine is not just one type of medicine. It encompasses a broad range of modalities which are sometimes complementary to conventional medical interventions.
Alternative Medicine as Preventative Measures
The first area of alternative medicine is used as preventative medicine. It does not replace conventional western medicine, but instead can help you reduce how often you might need to see a doctor. It is a great way to take care of mild health issues and support general health and wellness. Hopefully this can impact how much you need conventional medical treatment.
This type of alternative medicine might include eating a healthy diet, taking the right vitamins and supplements, using herbs or essential oils for things like chronic pain or inflammation in the body, exercising, and using supportive herbal remedies.
Alternative Medicine for the Body
There are some alternative medicine modalities that are better for your body, while some modalities have great mental benefits as well. Alternative medicine that is good for the body includes exercise, massage, and movement. For example, if you have chronic pain, maybe you will see a chiropractor to get an adjustment. Someone who has pain or stress-related physical issues might get a massage or seek help from an osteopathic physician.
This also includes gentle forms of exercise like stretching and walking.
Alternative Medicine for the Mind
There is also alternative medicine meant more for your mind, including behavioral and mental health. This could include meditation, visualization, cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness, drawingand journaling. Think of this as alternative medicine for your mental health and emotional health. What do you struggle with? It might be stress, anxiety, depression, lack of energy or brain fog, and many other issues.
While it is not meant to replace mental illness care from a licensed therapist or counselor, it can help to ease some of your symptoms in between therapy sessions or when you have high amounts of stress, unhealthy coping mechanisms, or just for general mental health improvements.
The important thing to remember here is that alternative medicine is not meant to replace physicians, specialists, surgeons, or therapists. It is used in conjunction with other methods of treating your mental and physical ailments. It can work together with conventional treatments to get you the best care possible, especially when you want to live a more holistic lifestyle.