Alternate Medicine form of Therapy or Treatment

Alternative medicine may be defined as any form of therapy or treatment that is outside the realms of the conventional Western form of medicine system. Alternative medicine is often talked about in conjunction with Complementary Therapy and the common term used for them is known as Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM).

Some of the mainstream CAMs are acupuncture, acupuncture, aromatherapy, herbal medicine, homeopathy, hypnotherapy, massage therapy, naturopathy, reiki, reflexology, and Yoga. Alternative medicine in the UK is growing year on year and in 2006 it generated expenditure of 1.6 billion pounds.

Generally speaking CAM's can be organised into different areas:

Whole Medical Systems (WMS): Examples of WMS are Naturopathy. Homeopathy, and Ayurveda.  Naturopathy aims at stimulating the body's in-built healing system by improving the diet and lifestyle of the people. Ayurveda, which hails from India, adopts a holistic approach of treating the mind body & spirit via massage, yoga, herbs, and meditation.

Mind-Body Medicine (MBM): refer to the techniques that aim at improving the symptoms and functions of the body. Examples of MBM are meditation and Yoga.

Manipulative and Body-Based Practices (MBBP): MBBP work by manipulating and rubbing soft tissues and muscles, promoting their repair, health, and flexibility. These types of therapies work by removing scar tissue, thereby promoting the flow of oxygen and helping the removal of toxins and acids. MBBP techniques include Chiropractic, Osteopathy, Massage & other body work, such as Shiatsu and Sports Massage.

Energy Medicine Therapies (EMT): EMT are believed to help the patient by tapping into the energy fields which cloak the human body. These techniques improve the energy flow by clearing the blockages in the body. Examples of these type of therapies are Reiki, Chinese Medicine and Energy Healing.

It is important to note that alternative medicines do not side step the mainstream traditional medicine. Instead, the mainstream traditional medicine seek help from CAMs to complement their treatment.
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