What are Different Types of Alternative Healthcare Solutions?
Over the last several years, a lot of people have started getting frustrated with the medical system.
They’re tired of being rushed through appointments and given band-aids for their symptoms instead of getting to the root cause of their issues. Because of this, many of these same people -- including more than one-third of adults and nearly 12 percent of children -- have started turning to alternative health care solutions instead.
There are tons of different alternative treatments out there that you can use to figure out what’s causing your symptoms and correct them for good. Read on to learn more about alternative health care and some of the most popular solutions you might want to try.
What is Alternative Health Care?
As the name suggests, alternative health care practices provide an alternative to traditional western medicine. It’s often referred to as CAM, which is short for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
One of the main differences between alternative health care and traditional medicine is the lack of prescription drugs used in alternative health care treatments. Instead of writing prescriptions to help relieve symptoms, alternative practitioners will utilize herbal supplements, as well as diet and lifestyle changes.
Alternative practitioners also place a greater emphasis on looking at the patient as a whole, rather than focusing solely on their symptoms. They take a holistic view and consider all the factors of a person and their lifestyle that might contribute to their health problems.
Why Choose Alternative Health Care?
There are many benefits that come with utilizing alternative health solutions. The following are some of the primary reasons why people seek out this type of care:
- Get to the root of their symptoms instead of just covering them up
- Learn lifestyle changes and practices to prevent symptoms from returning
- Take a more natural approach to healing without relying on prescription drugs
- Avoid invasive procedures that come with a lot of risks and long recovery times
In many cases, alternative health care solutions also help patients to feel more in control of their recovery. This sense of control an autonomy, by itself, can empower them to make changes that lead to better overall health.
Types of Alternative Health Care
Now that you know more about the basics of alternative health care, it’s time to get more specific. The following are some of the most well-known and frequently sought after alternative health care practices you might want to consider trying:
Aromatherapy involves the use of essential oils to help patients overcome their symptoms. Essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts that contain specific healing properties.
Most of the time, when undergoing aromatherapy treatment, the patient will inhale specific oils. For example, lavender oil helps to promote relaxation, while peppermint oil can help with nausea and headaches.
Oils can also be combined with a carrier like coconut oil and applied topically. Sometimes, patients will even consume them orally.
One of the greatest things about aromatherapy is the fact that it can be used at home or in another health care setting to help patients find relief from a wide range of symptoms.
Acupuncture involves the insertion of very thin, very small needles into specific points throughout the body. The goal of inserting these needles is to help balance out the energy in your body (known as qi), correct energy blockages, and bring everything into balance.
Like many alternative health care solutions, acupuncture has been around for thousands of years.
It can be very helpful for people struggling with symptoms related to chronic stress, such as migraines, tension headaches, digestive issues, and fatigue. It can also be helpful for those struggling with chronic pain.
Acupressure is similar to acupuncture. Instead of inserting needles into specific areas of the body, though, the practitioner uses their hands to put pressure on these points.
The end result of acupressure is like that of acupuncture. It helps to correct energy blockages and improve energy flow. This, in turn, can return the body to a more balanced and healthy state.
Acupressure may be a good option for individuals who are afraid of needles but still want to reap the benefits of acupuncture.
There are many different tea blends that can help people overcome illnesses and manage their symptoms.
One of the most effective tea blends is known as Essiac tea. This is an herbal tea blend that is known to be high in antioxidants and herbs like slippery elm and burdock root. Essiac tea may also have cancer-fighting properties thanks to its high antioxidant content.
Many other teas have high levels of antioxidants as well, including green and black tea, but Essiac tea is especially beneficial.
Check out our Essiac Tea!
In addition to herbal teas, there are many other herbal supplements that alternative health patients can use to manage their symptoms. For example, many people use herbs like ginger and mint to help with nausea or echinacea to help bolster their immune systems.
Some people consume these herbs in tea form, but you can also buy them in capsule and tablet form if you don’t like their flavor.
Chiropractors use techniques like manual spinal manipulation to align the spine and relieve pressure on the nerves. By doing this, they can help to relieve back and neck pain.
Chiropractic care can also be used to manage other health problems, such as allergies, migraines, digestive problems, and even behavioral problems in children.
Adjustments are painless, although patients may be a bit uncomfortable the first time they try them. After a session or two, when their pain and other symptoms start to subside, they’re eager to come back for more.
Many chiropractors combine adjustments with other treatments like ultrasound therapy, massage, and herbal supplementation.
Reflexology is similar to acupressure. However, reflexologists focus specifically on points of the feet. They use their hands to place pressure on different points that correspond to various organs, bones, and bodily symptoms.
By placing the appropriate amount of pressure on these areas, reflexologists can improve energy flow and correct imbalances that may be responsible for certain symptoms.
Many reflexologists combine this treatment with herbal supplements, aromatherapy, or massage to provide a more relaxing and healing experience.
Reiki is a form of energy healing. It’s centered around the belief that “life force energy” flows through everyone’s bodies but can become blocked in certain people.
During Reiki sessions, the reiki practitioner takes in this energy through their hands and then places their hands on the patient’s body. By doing this, they can help to balance out that person’s energy and restore their health.
Many people seek out Reiki when they need treatment for conditions like chronic stress, chronic pain, or depression.
Many health care practitioners (both traditional and alternative) make use of biofeedback machines to help their patients make connections between issues that contribute to their specific symptoms.
Biofeedback machines measure things like blood pressure and heart rate to help patients identify situations and other triggers that might cause them to feel stressed out.
Once the patients are aware of these triggers, they can take steps to manage their stress in healthy ways to prevent more severe symptoms from occurring.
Homeopathy is based around the principle of pairing “like with like.” Homeopathic practitioners will treat specific ailments by exposing patients to a highly diluted substance that kick starts their immune system and help them start fighting off illness faster.
Homeopathy might seem strange of counterintuitive at first. There are examples of homeopathic medicine in traditional medicine, though.
For example, vaccines involve exposing patients to a small amount of a particular illness to help them become more resilient to it and prevent them from developing it in the future. Once the immune system has been exposed to this illness, the person is less likely to become sick later on.
Ayurveda (also referred to as Ayurvedic medicine) is an ancient form of medicine that originated in India.
Ayurvedic medicine practitioners use a variety of techniques, including herbal supplements, dietary changes, and massage to help bring the body into balance. Ayurveda has been around for thousands of years, and many people swear by it.
In order to determine the proper protocol for you, and Ayurvedic practitioner will consider your dosha or metabolic type. There are three doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. They each align with the three elements. Vata is associated with wind, Pitta is associated with fire, and Kapha is associated with water.
Once the practitioner knows your dosha, they will make recommendations to help bring all of the elements into alignment.
Try These Alternative Health Care Solutions Today
As you can see, there are lots of different alternative health care solutions you might want to try to help you get your health back on track.
You can use these solutions on their own or in conjunction with other treatments (including more traditional treatments) to speed up the healing process and start feeling more like your old self.
Give one (or more) a try today and see how you feel afterwards!
Related: What is Gout?