Perhaps you've heard the term Holistic Medicine and wondered just what it means. Is it some sort of mystical healing art or far out alternative method of medicine? Well, it's not either of those. In fact, it's not far out or strange in any way. Holistic medicine is really just a "whole" approach to treatment as opposed to a narrow approach. So, if you're interested in an overall approach to both your health and well being then you should definitely take a look at holistic health.
Standard medical practice tends to focus on specific maladies and treatments. You have medical condition and the doctor takes care of that condition with a specific treatment. Many times the root cause of the condition may be ignored and the focus is upon the symptoms. As an example, if you have high blood pressure your doctor will most likely prescribe a drug to lower it. But, the root cause of your high blood pressure may remain requiring that you stay on the drug for an indeterminate period of time. Unfortunately that is generally how standard medicine works. It tends to ignore your overall state of health and well being and focuses on particular ailment or condition. This approach is not necessarily bad but it does not always create a better level of health for its patients.
Holistic medicine approaches health from a more generalized perspective. It looks at the physical, mental, emotional, nutritional, environmental, social and spiritual aspects of the patients well being. It also considers all aspects of diagnosis and treatment. Holistic medicine views treatment from a natural perspective first but does not rule out drugs or surgery if they are needed. While conventional medicine tends to immediately rely upon drugs, holistic medicine explores all other opportunities before going down the drug path. Personal responsibility for one's health and well being are also an important aspect of holistic medicine. After all, if your own personal health is a low priority for yourself then you really can't pass the responsibility on to someone else. Holistic practitioners want to help their patients in any way they can but the patient himself must take some responsibility for their well being.
The holistic approach looks at each person as a unique individual and disease as the result of an imbalance in the physical, emotional, spiritual, social or environmental aspects of a persons life. It is believed that by re-introducing balance between these components healing will occur naturally. The holistic practitioner explores all aspects of their patients livelihood and tries to guide them toward a more balanced equilibrium. The patient, however, is the one that must make the effort to change things such as habits, beliefs, lifestyle etc.
Holistic medicine is an umbrella term that covers many different alternative and mainstream approaches. Acupuncture, acupressure, aromatherapy, homeopathy, meditation, reflexology, yoga, qigong and massage are just a few of the techniques used in holistic medicine. Obviously these techniques can result in better health even when no disease is present. Unlike traditional medicine where you usually visit your doctor only when something is wrong, the practice of holistic medicine can result in much better health and well being long before any illness or disease occurs. And, hopefully the practitioner can avoid disease all together.
So, if you're considering a holistic approach to your health there are many options available to you and you should carefully consider each of them. Find what works best for you as an individual and make the move toward better health. As the holistic approach becomes more popular more practitioners, and conventional doctors for that matter, will be available to help you better understand your options. In the future an effective blend of alternative, complementary, and traditional medicine, which is the goal of the holistic approach, will hopefully result in better health and longevity for everyone.