Alternative Medicines Essay Research Paper Modern medicine

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Alternative Medicines Essay, Research Paper Modern medicine is in a period of profound change. Everyday, more and more ideas from other cultures are being transferred and integrated into our society. Many treatments that people are now familiar with have come from other traditions. Aspirin and quinine are two familiar examples of treatments that have been “westernized” by science. Alternative medical traditions will not replace western medicine, but instead are adding a new dimension of treatment that will only strengthen modern medicine. Western medicine is the clear leader in infectious disease, some cancers, heart disease, surgery, emergency medicine and trauma care. However, for the ordinary complaints of everyday life, the aches and pains of joints, bones and

muscles, alternative medicine is the best choice of remedy. Scientific medicine does save many lives through surgery or pharmacology drugs, but all of the advances of western medicine have inadvertently led to new problems. For example, living longer allows more time for development of chronic and degenerative diseases. “Iatrogenic” problems (illness caused by the medicine itself) as well as chronic illnesses have forced people to turn toward other dimensions of care. Conventional medicine is learning much about the complexity of human biology, but it is also learning less about how to handle difficult situations and adapt to crises arising from alternative treatments. Natural, non-invasive therapies, manipulative therapies and mind/body approaches are coming of age and

taking on a partnership role with western medicine, affecting it for the better. Alternative treatments can no longer be considered suspect because the evidence of their contributions to the health care system are so overwhelmingly clear. There are many different traditions that make up alternative medicine. Some of these traditions are very closely related in their beliefs and techniques and herbal remedies are certainly a common bond that is shared between them. However, the following four alternative treatments will be explored: -Chinese medicine -Ayurveda -Homeopathy -Naturopathic medicine Other countries’ cultures and traditions can teach modern medicine that there are many more ways to treat and cure diseases, and hopefully the realization will lead to a more holistic

approach to medicine. The joining of conventional and alternative medical traditions will allow people to have a more balanced quality of life, and will ultimately enhance the total health care system. When a person chooses what form of medical treatment is right for them, they must consider these factors that will influence their decision: 1) Family History -the easiest way to decide what treatment is the best is to use the tradition in which a person grew up with. 2) Introspective Approach -base the decision on philosophical or religious considerations. 3) Personal Relationship with the Practitioner -people may base their choice not on the tradition itself but rather on the relationship to the practitioner. 4) Economic Consideration -because the allopathic tradition is so

institutionalized in society, people who must rely on insurance coverage or government programs may find a narrow range of freedom of choice. 5) Proximity -large population centres have the greatest availability of the full range of medical traditions. Therefore, people outside of these areas are usually limited to allopathy. 6) Scientific Support – the government and its regulatory agencies have asserted that scientific evidence should be the basis of evaluation for all forms of medicine. Chinese Medicine Chinese Medicine is a nature-based model of medicine. Nature and the laws that govern the natural or “outer world” are used to help people to understand the “inner world” the world of the body. The person is seen as a microcosm of a holistic universe. Chinese medicine