Holistic Wellness is an approach to being healthy that takes the whole person into consideration; mind, body, and spirit. Each of these work together to help a person stay balanced. The ultimate goal of holistic medicine philosophy is to achieve optimal health and this happens by gaining proper balance in the areas previously mentioned.
Holistic practitioners believe the whole person is made up of codependent parts and when one is not working properly, all the other parts are affected as well. For example, if someone has imbalances in their emotional life (anxiety, depression, etc.) it can negatively affect their overall health. They could also suffer from insomnia, digestive issues, tension headaches, etc.
Holistic doctors typically use alternative therapies to treat a patient. When a person suffering from migraines visits a holistic doctor, instead of just getting prescribed medication, the doctor will look at all the potential factors that may be causing the migraines. They will gather information of the patient’s sleeping habits, diet, personal problems, and spiritual practices. The treatment plan may involve medication, but more than likely it will consist of lifestyle modification and natural remedies to help prevent the migraines from recurring.
Holistic medicine is also based on the belief that treatment involves fixing the cause of the condition and not just alleviating the symptoms. Depending on the holistic practitioner’s training they will use a variety of treatment techniques to help their patients achieve optimal health. Treatments include:
· Patient education on lifestyle changes and self-care to promote wellness. This may include diet changes, exercise, psychotherapy, spiritual counseling, and more.
· Complementary and alternative therapies such as acupuncture, chiropractic care, massage therapy, naturopathy, and more
To find a holistic practitioner in your area, visit the American Holistic Medical Association website. Here are some tips to keep in mind when choosing a holistic provider.
· Don’t just go to anyone, do your homework. Before choosing a holistic medicine doctor conduct extensive research on their beliefs and practices and make sure they are licensed. Find out as much as you can about their training, experience, specialty, and association with professional organizations. Take into consideration their treatment philosophy, is it similar to your own views?
· How do you feel? Consider how comfortable you are with the provider. Do they make you feel at ease? Are they respectful of your concerns and beliefs? Holistic medicine requires a team approach, involving you and the doctor, so make sure you feel comfortable and respected.
· Questions: In order to understand you as a whole person and not just a disease, be prepared to answer a lot of questions. Including but not limited to: diet, exercise, sleep habits, how you feel emotionally, religious beliefs, relationships, etc.
· Treatment: Does the treatment plan go beyond pulls? Make sure the provider examines all lifestyle factors, along with medical factors that could be contributing to the illness
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