alternative medicine – what is it?

When did you last look forward to going to your healthcare provider? Yesterday? Last month? Never?

Something many people don’t stop to consider about their health is their whole-body care. This is what is meant when you hear the term holistic. As in holistic medicine and holistic care.


Alternative medicine emphasizes this whole-body care, addressing not just the physical body but also emotional and spiritual health.

These somewhat new approaches to human health are grounded in multi-cultural disciplines by people seeking the essence of pure life and enhanced by the beauty and resources found in nature.

Alternative medicine offers a holistic, integrated approach to healing and may include practices such as herbal medicines, physical activity, chiropractic care, and acupuncture.

With more medical professionals beginning to suggest the use of alternative therapies in combination with conventional medical treatments, many more studies are being done to examine both the usefulness and safety of these non-traditional treatments.

Alternative medicine has been playing a large role in the healing industry for centuries and its popularity is showing no sign of slowing down.

The numerous benefits directly linked with alternative or natural medicine has created a wave of interest, especially in the western world, that seems to continue to grow at a rapid rate.

Alternative medicine includes a range of treatments that, while considered unorthodox, have various advantages that many modern forms of medicine simply cannot achieve.

Due to its practices being generally not accepted as a traditional or standard approach in the medical field, alternative medicine has received criticism and backlash for being “backwards and unreliable.”

Unfortunately, natural medicine is also commonly associated as a remedy that is only used by those who are unable to afford modern treatment despite the countless studies focused on the subject that say otherwise.

One study, for example, found that majority of individuals who use alternative medicine use it “because they find these health care alternatives to be more congruent with their own values, beliefs, and philosophical orientations toward health and life” says the Jama Network.

Chiropractic care is a form of alternative medication which is used to develop healthy muscles and strong bones. It can relieve you from lower back pain, headache and high blood pressure.

Generally referred more as a “complementary” medicine as opposed to alternative due to its wider range of acceptance, chiropractic is constantly used to help develop strong bones and healthy surrounding muscles.

Chiropractors focus on manipulating the spinal cord with force exerted from their hands to realign and ensure proper form regarding the spine.

They focus on the direct relationship between the nervous system and the spine to reduce pain in the lower back or neck. It also helps headaches, joint pain and high blood pressure by restoring the communication between brain and body and vice versa.

Herbal medicines can be used by some for treating many different kinds of health ailments like diabetes, heart condition, skin problems, allergy and respiratory problems. Herbs can help promote good health.

Individuals resorting to alternative medicines might end up incorporating healthy lifestyle by enjoying yoga, meditation, and other physical activities which are known to offer long-lasting health benefits. Individuals might indulge in these exercises for physical, mental and spiritual gains.

Herbal medicine is tailored around the use of plants, roots, berries, and leaves and is utilized to employ the body’s natural healing capabilities.

This technique has not only been around for thousands of years, but it has also been known to help cure conditions such as heart problems, skin rashes, chronic fatigue, and premenstrual cycle, and more.

There are about four billion people (80% of the world’s population) who are currently using herbal medication treatment as their primary health care further proving the benefits of alternative medicine.

Acupuncture is another form of alternative therapy which has gathered worldwide attention. Joint pain, depression, nicotine addiction can be successfully cured with the aid of acupuncture treatment. Acupuncture treatment is being used by many individuals across the world to deal with mental illnesses.

The best part about acupuncture treatment is that it can be performed on individuals with low immunity as well. Osteoarthritis, stress, tennis elbow and insomnia are among the list of other ailments that can be cured with the aid of acupuncture treatment.

An extremely popular form of alternative medicine, acupuncture has helped millions of Americans with its use of needles and/or electric stimulation and is even used by licensed physicians who say it has “increased success in treating problems that often resist Western medicine.”

This ancient Chinese technique has been tested with case-controlled clinical studies and has shown that acupuncture can successfully help alleviate illnesses such as:

  • Digestive problems
  • Back pain
  • Anxiety
  • Sleep disorders
  • Depression
  • Much more

Many people turn to alternative medicine therapies for pain relief when traditional treatments fail to work. Alternative medicine also offers treatment options to individuals who do not have access to pain clinics under their health insurance plans. 

Alternative medicine therapies used together with conventional medical treatments can alleviate some of the symptoms of cancer, as well as lessen the negative side effects of conventional medical treatments. Chemotherapy, although effective in increasing the survival rate of many cancer patients, can produce unpleasant side effects. Some cancer patients can tolerate chemotherapy treatments better when using an alternative treatment such as acupuncture to control side effects like fatigue, headache, nausea, vomiting, night sweats and aching.

cost of alternative therapies

Prices for modern medicine are skyrocketing and there are countless cases of people finding help and relief from alternative medicine.

Alternative medicine works to find the core of the problem and takes a different route than most are used to.

Alternative medicine therapies can be less expensive than conventional medical treatments. Although some alternative therapies are not cheap, many herbal remedies and other natural treatments still cost less than prescription medications and treatments. Acupuncture and chiropractic sessions can cost significantly less than conventional pain therapy treatments.

Advantages to Using Alternative Medicines and Therapies

In today’s day and age, we are recognizing more and more about the effects that our bodies are having with what we put inside of them. There are many advantages to using alternative medicine over the typical mainstream prescriptions and medicines. Health care professionals themselves are even becoming more and more open to alternative medicine and the benefits it can have for the body.

Advantage #1: It treats the Root Cause. One of the best advantages that alternative medicine offers is that it heals the body and is designed to treat the cause of the pain or disease that has occurred. By understanding and treating the disease, Chiropractors and other alternative medicine professionals work at the root of the problem. Mainstream medicine, on the other hand, tends to treat the symptom that the disease or pain is causing, not actually treating the cause.

Advantage #2: It is an improvement of the Quality of Life. When we use prescription drugs, we generally see an improvement in pain, but once the drug goes out of our system the pain returns. When using alternative medicine, there is a drastic improvement in the quality of life a person has.

Advantage #3: It is safer. Alternative medicine is a wide spectrum of therapies, and they are almost always considered to be much safer than mainstream medicine. Natural remedies are used to correct the problem. There are no man-made, unnatural substances that you would be using to put in your body.

Advantage #4: It does not have bad side effects. When using mainstream medicine, you might be able to get rid of your headache, but the side effects might include nausea, hallucinations and risk of stroke in the process. Almost all mainstream medicine has some type of warning about the bad side effects that come from taking it, where natural remedies don’t.

Advantage #5: It is more flexible. Alternative medicine allows more flexibility in treatment plans. Many chiropractors and alternative medicine professionals’ change their treatment plans according to lifestyle changes, where mainstream medical professionals wouldn’t.

Advantage #6: It looks at overall health of your body. Alternative medicine focuses on healing pain and disease by balancing out other aspects of your life. Sleep, nutrition and stress can affect your body, so adapting health plans with these in mind is important with alternative medicine. Mainstream medicine is not nearly as well rounded.

Advantage #7: It doesn’t offer dependency treatment options. Prescription pills can cause dependency and other harmful side effects to the body and mind. Alternative medicine does not have those same disadvantages.

Take care of your body and it will take care of you.



To schedule an appointment for treatment with chiropractic, acupuncture or massage, please contact Shimer Chiropractic today at 720-340-4107. Your body will thank you.  

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