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Sitting on the Fence about Alternative Medicine? Here are 7 Alternative Methods that Even Your Physi

Author: Shirley Balerio
by Shirley Balerio
Posted: Mar 29, 2020
tai chi

People choosing conventional treatments raise their brow whenever they hear the word "alternative" or "holistic." Not many of them know though that many of the alternative healing therapies are sustained by scientific evidence, which is why numerous doctors include them as part of treatment.

Do people choose alternative medicine more often than conventional medicine?

It’s pretty funny how people find out about alternative medicine. For instance, one with heart palpitations, extreme exhaustion, and insomnia may be prescribed by the doctor to take an ancient herb.

Even if there are plenty of doctors doubting the benefits of alternative medicine, the numbers are stating otherwise. According to a Harvard study, it seems that homeopathic medicine raised to 15% in the US, and more than one-third of hospitals in the US are currently providing integrative medicine. It means that the patients benefit both conventional and alternative therapies too.

What are the most common alternative methods recommended by conventional doctors?

Doctors and physicians don't always reach for the chemical medication for helping their friends. More often than not, they also recommend plants and alternative methods when addressing various conditions. Here are some of the most popular alternative methods that even physicians and doctors stand by:

1. Guided imagery

Guided imagery is an excellent method for speeding up recovery in patients going through surgery. Visualizing your success before and after surgery can help you heal faster.

In one study, subjects going through ACL surgery rehearsed the therapy exercises mentally, visualizing the physiological healing process. The participants practicing imagery presented improvements in terms of knee stability and lower level for the stress hormones.

Guided imagery is also reducing anxiety related to surgery. It seems that visualizing yourself already recovered can lower the heart rate, easing out the anxiety symptoms.

2. Yoga is excellent for depression and anxiety

Even if not everyone sees yoga as an alternative therapy, we all know that practicing it is good for our body and mind. According to one study, people with severe depressive disorder taking yoga and in-depth breathing classes twice a week noted a reduction in their depression symptoms.

Directly inhaling and exhaling in even measures will affect the way patients deal with anxiety and depression.

Yoga is a familiar presence in the luxurious healing facilities, where patients benefit from various alternative therapies and technologies. Along with HBOT therapy, floatation tank therapy, or meditation, patients with anxiety, depression, PTSD, or addiction can practice yoga for succeeding in their healing.

3. Tai chi

The latest research revealed that cognitive behavioral therapy and tai chi might reduce inflammation and insomnia. Patients undergoing both cognitive behavioral therapy and tai chi for a year presented lower blood levels of C-reactive protein. Additionally, patients showed lower production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which are signs of inflammation.

Practicing tai chi will help you eliminate stress and even get better sleep at night.

4. Acupuncture

People struggling with chronic pain often go through something called the "snowball effect." It means that the longer the pain exists, the more difficult it will be to treat it.

Even if scientists still didn’t figure out how acupuncture really works, it seems that acupuncture increases the level of brain chemicals that make us feel good, such as endorphins and serotonin. At the same time, acupuncture can deactivate regions of the brain related to pain perception.

It's scientifically proven that acupuncture is efficient for treating chronic pain. On top of everything else, the effects are long-lasting.

5. Hypnosis

Numerous studies revealed that hypnosis helps people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) handle their symptoms a lot better. According to a study in 2015, 76% of 1,000 IBS patients managed to reduce their symptoms by 50% when using hypnosis.

There's another study noting that the effects of hypnosis on IBS symptoms are so durable that people were feeling better even after 6, 10, or 12 months.

6. Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is an alternative therapy that helps patients with depression, anxiety, and even chronic diseases. Numerous small studies have revealed that aromatherapy can improve the lives of people with dementia and alleviate pain for people with kidney stones.

The essential oils used in aromatherapyactivate the smell receptors in the nose, sending messages through the nervous and limbic systems. They’re also responsible for controlling emotions in the brain. For instance, rose water reduces anxiety. If need be, essential oils can be used for massage therapy, calming, and relaxing the patient.

7. Supplements

Should we take a look at Chinese medicine, we notice that herbs and teas are fundamental for treating numerous health conditions. However, the benefits of herbs and teas haven’t been meticulously studied, as there are thousands of them.

More often than not, conventional medicine cannot provide all the benefits of plants and their combinations. At times, combining some herbs may even harm one. For instance, alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) reduces the tingling and numbness in patients undergoing chemotherapy. Also, if the results are promising, more research is required.

It’s the same for vitamin D and green tea extract, which may lower the risk of developing cancer. Until more results are obtained, you should stick to what we know for sure until now.

About the Author

Teacher-turned online blogger, Shirley is a full-time backyard homesteader based in Virginia. When she doesn't have her face buried in a book or striding in her garden, she's busy blogging about simple life hacks of the daily life.

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Author: Shirley Balerio
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Shirley Balerio

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