What is holistic medicine?

Holistic medicine can be described as a treatment that addresses the wellness of the whole body. This would be a healing process that considers the mind, body, and spirit when promoting health and treating diseases. [1] It can also be understood as looking at the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual elements of a person, and understanding how they are interconnected. By understanding the connection, the illness is no longer the focal point, but the person as a whole is treated.[2]  The main goal of holistic medicine according to its philosophy is to achieve health through gaining the proper balance in life.

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Finding balance in your life

For most people, living a holistic life means living a balance life. Each person is different, and needs to look at their lives and analyze how it could be better balanced. Are you working too much, do you focus on your body while not paying attention to your spirit? Looking inward and taking steps to live a more holistic life can benefit both people suffering from a known illness and/or those looking to change their current lifestyle. 

Treatments and Techniques

There are various types of holistic treatments and you should find the one that is right for you. Each holistic practitioner may take a different approach. Some may recommend patient regulated exercise and education. This could range from encouraging journaling and meditation to diet management and exercise. Another option may be to seek counseling or therapy to help you gain a better awareness of your current mental awareness.

Another treatment technique may include complimentary therapies. The holistic practitioner may recommend acupuncture, massage therapy, homeopathy, or other practice that work with the body to heal itself.

Lastly, holistic medicine may be pair with generally accepted Western medicine. For example, a cancer patient may go through chemotherapy, but may also be recommended to seek therapy or meditate.

The treatments used vary from patient to patient and should focus on the wellness of the whole body and not always on the treatment of a specific illness.[3]

As with any medical condition, you should always seek the advice of a medical profession.

Benefits of holistic medicine

Since most of the treatments focus on the individual self-educating themselves, holistic medicine can be less expensive than traditional medicine. In addition, these methods start with the least harmful to the patient. Most have minimal if any side effects, which can be a concern for someone looking into typical medical treatments.

Additionally, many people who find that traditional medicines or surgeries are not helping with an illness do find that holistic medicine helps them look at their whole self. Once they do this, their work on finding balance helps relieve symptoms.

Holistic medicine helps someone evaluate their lifestyle, and learn to find balance between the mind, body, and spirit.