Types of Alternative Therapies and How They Work
Long before Western medicine, traditional medicine was used to treat “everyday” aches and pains to illnesses like smallpox and influenza. But, with the 19th century, came the rise of modern (or western) medicine. The practice of medicine changed in the face of rapid scientific research as well as new approaches used by physicians. With medications replacing herbs, traditional medicines gave way to a drug-centric approach. Today, alternative therapies based on the traditional medicines have reappeared and are now being used to complement Western medicine. When discussing alternative therapies with your Pain and Spine Specialists Physician, there are some therapies you should think about trying.
the term “acupuncture” is actually used to describe an array of procedures that stimulate specific points in the body. But the best-known variety of acupuncture is the small, thin needles that are used to penetrate the skin. These needles are inserted and controlled by a licensed practitioner. Currently used by millions of Americans each year, many studies have found this alternative therapy helpful with depression and chronic pain.
Biofeedback is a technique that allows people to control their body processes that normally happen involuntarily. These processes include heart rate, blood pressure, muscle tension, and skin temperature. Biofeedback is usually used to improve conditions including high blood pressure, headaches, and chronic aches and pains. Patients work with a therapist to learn and perfect these relaxation techniques and mental exercise. In initial sessions, electrodes are attached to the skin to measure the body’s state. But after a few sessions, the electrodes are removed and the patient is then able to practice the techniques without the equipment or a therapist present. Most people who benefit from biofeedback suffer from conditions that are caused by or exacerbated by chronic stress.
These are just two of the alternative therapies offered or recommended by Pain and Spine Specialists. For more information on using alternative therapies or complementing your existing treatments with them, call us today!