Alternative medicine includes a variety of health care practices like acupuncture, homeopathy and chiropractic that may not have a scientific explanation for their effectiveness and do not follow accepted mainstream medical methods. Up until the end of the twentieth century, the alternative treatments were not included in degree courses of medical schools.
There are many definitions available to explain what is alternative medicine, but they all have a common feature, its designation as “other than” conventional medicine or not part of conventional medicine. Many disapprove, arguing that if an alternative safe and effective method is used by conventional medical practitioners, it can no longer be considered alternative.
Critics say that alternative methods are not effective because they are based on tradition, pseudoscience, superstition and propaganda. Research on alternative medicine is of low quality or flawed If you want to understand better what is alternative medicine about, take a look at the following treatments:
Acupuncture is based on the detection of disharmony within the body by asking the pacient about current lifestyle and emotional distress. Fine needles are inserted into certain points of the body to restore the energetic balance and relieve pain. Acupuncture is used for treating degenerative and chronic illness.
Similar to acupuncture, acupressure uses pressure applied to the “points” with the fingers instead of needles. If you were wondering what is alternative medicine used for, think about what acupressure does: it relieves tension, stress and ameliorates aches and pain.
This method alleviates stress and related emotional distress. Essential oils distilled from plants are massages on the body, placed in baths or inhaled. Often other treatments are used along with aromatherapy like reflexology, chiropractic and herbology.
Ayurvedic medicine originates from India and uses a complex treatment plan that involves diet, detoxification and psychical exercise. Hygiene is an important factor in ayurvedic medicine and regular bathing, skin care, and cleaning of teeth are encouraged. Practitioners believe that the mental existence and personality form a unit that should be taken into consideration during the diagnosis and treatment. Contemporary ayurveda aims to achieve a good digestion, proper excretion and a healthy metabolic system.
Osteopathy and chiropractic manipulation
Based on the tradition of bone-setting, osteopathy and chiropractic treat subluxations or small displacements of the spine and joints. The first chiropractic college was established in the UK during the 1960s. Chiropractors view the spine as essential for the proper functioning of the body and mind. Any misstatements of the vertebrae caused by posture or trauma can press the spinal nerve roots and lead to the development of illness.