The medical industry is a multi-billion enterprise that crosses all borders and continents. There are many different practices and disciplines, specializing in all parts of the body.
However, as mainstream medicine often goes hand-in-hand with medications, surgeries, and other treatments – many individuals opt for a more traditional, herbal or natural alternative that have been in practice for centuries.
Alternative medicines are fast regaining popularity and have shown great potential for health benefits. But these more natural approaches extend past herbal supplements, like those found on Consumer Advisors.
Let’s explore some of the alternative medical practices in existence today.
Similar to acupuncture, this technique focuses on pressure points along the meridians to stimulate and balance energy and tension in the muscles. Using their fingers, practitioners press along these points to relieve pain and alleviate other conditions.
- Relieve stress
- Boost energy
- Reduce pain
- Lessen cancer symptoms
Acupuncture also works according to pressure points, where thin needles are inserted into the muscle at various depths. As a popular Chinese medicine, it is most commonly used for pain and muscle tension but has also been prescribed for other conditions.
- Manages headaches and migraines
- Reduces muscle spasms
- Decreases symptoms of osteoarthritis
- Improves digestion
- Lifts mood
- Treats allergies
Aromatherapy, or therapy using aromas, is a holistic treatment that uses aromatic and essential oils for their therapeutic properties. This technique is said to help calm and heal the mind, body, and soul.
- Reduce stress, depression, and anxiety
- Improve energy levels
- Boosts cognitive and mental function
- Fortifies the immune system
- Pain relief
- Improved circulation
Ayurvedic medicine is one of the oldest traditional healing treatments in the world. It originated thousands of years ago and is based on the principle that your health and overall wellness depends on balancing your mind, body, and spirit.
- Can reduce stress and anxiety
- Manages healthy blood pressure and cholesterol
- Speeds up recovery
- Decreases inflammation
- Balances hormones
- Assists with chronic and menstrual pain
Balneotherapy is an alternative healing technique that requires the person to bathe in mineral-rich water and hot springs. Usually found at wellness spas, it should be noted that it is different from hydrotherapy.
- Improved circulation
- Fights stress and anxiety
- Boosts immune function
Biofeedback is a technique where you gain a better awareness of your physiological functions, learning how to control bodily processes. By using certain instruments, the patient is supposed to be able to activate and control these systems at will.
- Control muscle tension
- Manage blood pressure
- Regulate heart rate
This alternative medicine is concerned with the treatment and therapy of mechanical disorders. Focusing predominantly on the spine and musculoskeletal system. Chiropractors adjust the body through hands-on spinal manipulation, restoring joint and nervous system function.
- Reduces pain
- Improves posture
- Prevents joint dysfunction
Homeopathy is based on the belief that the body is able to cure itself, without chemical medications. Natural supplements and substances are often used in small quantities to stimulate healing.
- Alleviates insomnia
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Treats cold and flu symptoms (other common household conditions)
Also referred to as zone therapy, reflexology is an alternative practice that involves applying pressure to the hands and feet. It works on the belief that there are pressure points on your hands and feet that correlate with other parts of your body, which can indicate disease and other conditions.
- Stimulates nerve function
- Boosts energy
- Improves circulation
- Alleviates pain
- Manages depression and stress
Originating in Japan, Reiki is a stress relieving technique that is said to promote healing. Administered by laying on hands, it works on a belief that there is an energy that flows through the body. This energy is ‘unseen’ and needs to be aligned (chakras).
- Promotes relaxation
- Develops mental, emotional and spiritual strength
- Manages depression, anxiety and emotional stress
- Improves well-being
Every country and culture has many of their own alternative treatments, remedies and traditional medicines that have survived through the ages. Some have proven to be effective, while others are seen as taboo. It all comes down to personal preference.
As these techniques are based on tradition more than science, they should not be used as cures for serious conditions.