Alternative MedicineTampa, FL
Alternative medicine focuses on improving patients’ health to reduce the risk of pain and illness before it happens, unlike traditional and conventional medicine. Most people prefer to stay healthy and avoid illness whenever possible. Tracing its roots in Eastern culture, the West has adopted more alternative medicine techniques in recent years to help promote healing and overall health.
At Body XI, we use alternative medicine to help our patients achieve and maintain optimal health. We use the least invasive yet highly-effective techniques and services. Call our office at (813) 518-0566 to learn more or schedule an appointment.
Alternative Medicine Vs. Allopathic Medicine
Alternative medicine, also known as complementary or integrative medicine, is a broad umbrella term that describes several diverse treatment options, practices, and systems. It primarily focuses on natural body stimulation and healing through various non-invasive techniques. This is compared to allopathic (“traditional” or “western”) medicine, which is based on evidence-based and conventional medical practices.
A 2017 Pew Research survey shows that half of the American population has received alternative medicine practices. In fact, 20% of those surveyed reported using it instead of conventional medicine, while 29% said they used it in addition to a traditional treatment plan. The survey also found that people who live with a chronic medical condition are more likely to use complementary or alternative medical treatment than those who do not have said conditions.
Identifying the safest and most effective methods for clinical trials and research is a crucial part of conventional medicine. Allopathic medicine treats specific diseases, while alternative medicine targets the whole body to prevent illness. Complementary medicine uses alternative methods in combination with conventional medicine, while alternative medicine is used in place of allopathic methods. Alternative medicine and complementary medicine can be grouped together under the acronym of CAM.
The History of Alternative Medicine
Medicine is deeply rooted in civilizations' cultural, religious, and societal beliefs. Medical practices evolved from herbal and plant-based treatments to the modern scientifically proven and technology-based options people use today. Much of modern medicine is based on practices traced back to 3100 BCD in Mesopotamia, now known as Egypt and Iraq. However, many practices used in Ancient Egypt, such as herbal treatments, were adopted and used by the Greeks and Romans.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a long, thousand-year history and has contributed many of its practices to alternative medicine. It is based on Qi, life force which courses through the body, and any imbalance can cause illness and chronic disease.
Types of Alternative Medicine
The medical world is constantly learning about complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). More types are discovered and researched daily, with more to be discovered in the future. There are several different types of alternative medicine. Some of the types we offer at Body XI include:
- Mind-Body Therapies: These techniques combine mental, respiratory, and physical components to relax the body and the mind of the patient. They can help in practices such as meditation, tai chi, and yoga.
- Manipulative and Body-Based Practices: This category of CAM involves working with parts of the body through methods such as massage and chiropractic therapy, as well as reflexology.
During a consultation, we can help determine if any of these methods will be effective in providing the patient with lasting relief. In many cases, these treatments can work in tandem with the patient’s current treatment plan. However, patients will want to work with their primary physician to help verify if they are candidates for CAM methods.
The Benefits of Alternative Medicine
CAM methods have effective treatment techniques, especially when combined with traditional medicine. Each type of CAM method may focus on a specific health aspect. Generally, CAM may provide benefits, including:
- Anxiety or stress relief
- Feelings of well-being, pleasure, and inner peace
- Less expensive
- Mood improvement
- More energy or less exhausted
- Pain relief
- Wound healing
Some Western and conventional professionals are becoming more open to treating patients with complementary treatment plans, as there is research coming out about the benefits of CAM methods every day. While more research is needed to vet the effectiveness and safety of specific methods, there are advantages of using CAM with traditional Western medicine.
What to Expect During Treatment And Aftercare
During the patient’s first visit, one of our chiropractors will perform an initial exam. They will review the patient’s medical history, physical condition, lifestyle habits, and health and wellness goals. The chiropractor may recommend further diagnostic tests, such as an X-ray or an MRI, in order to design a custom and beneficial treatment plan. Patients can also speak with one of our team members to learn more about complementary and alternative medicine, the services we offer, and if they are an ideal candidate.
During a traditional chiropractic or massage therapy appointment, the chiropractor will position the patient either on a table or a specialized chair. They will use their hands, instruments, or a combination of both to apply the appropriate treatment. If the patient receives a chiropractic adjustment, such as spinal manipulation or mobilization, they may hear popping or cracking noises; this happens due to gas bubbles being released from between joints.
However, if the treatment session includes a therapeutic massage, the practitioner will use different pressure and manual therapy techniques. These will be determined by the types of massage and the patient’s comfort. They can stop the session at any point if the patient is uncomfortable or in pain.
Following treatment, some patients may feel fatigued or sore in the treated areas. These side effects typically resolve on their own. Patients should also drink plenty of water and rest to help the body rid itself of toxins.
Schedule an appointment today
Alternative medicine has a centuries-long history and is most effective when used with traditional medicine. If you have questions about the safety and efficacy of CAM methods offered at Body XI, we are here to answer them. Call us at (813) 518-0566 to learn more or schedule an appointment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any risks to alternative medicine?
Generally, when provided by a trained professional, CAM methods are safe and effective. There are always risks to medical treatments and procedures. Our team will take necessary precautions to ensure the patient’s safety.
What CAM methods do you use?
Body XI offers several different types of manipulative and body-based practices, such as chiropractic care and massage therapy. Each treatment plan is designed and implemented to address the needs of the patient. If you are curious about other CAM methods, be sure to ask our team.
Do I have to continue treatment forever?
Most often, no. We design treatment plans to resolve specific problems or conditions to be as efficient as possible. Some patients may choose to continue general preventive care to achieve their wellness goals and reduce the risk for later injury.
What is the difference between CAM and integrative medicine?
While some may use complementary, alternative, and integrative medicine interchangeably, each approach has distinct differences. In complementary medicine, non-mainstream practices are combined with conventional methods of treatment. Alternative medicine is a non-mainstream medical practice used in lieu of conventional medicine. Integrative medicine aims to provide health care that encompasses all therapeutic approaches - conventional and non-mainstream - and applies them to the whole person.
Will my health coverage apply to alternative medicine?
Health coverage varies from policy to policy and depends on the insurance company. Patients can look into their insurance coverage and what treatment options are available. Our team at Body XI will go over these options under your insurance policy and make recommendations as to the most effective and beneficial option for your health.
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