Holistic healing has risen in popularity over the recent years. More people are focusing on the entirety of their health rather than dealing with the manifestation of deeper problems.
If you’ve recently heard about the practice, you might be wondering: what is holistic medicine and how can it help? Ahead, we’ll give you some more information about what a holistic healing practitioner does, as well as how it has an advantage over traditional medicine.
Holistic healing isn’t some mystical form of treatment. It’s quite practical, and there are some reasons you should explore holistic healing further.
What is Holistic Medicine?
Holistic medicine is exactly what the name suggests. It is an approach to medicine that focuses on more than just the body and the symptoms you experience. Instead, it broadens its healing capabilities by focusing on you and your life holistically.
Your holistic health is more than just how your body is responding to the world around it. The answer to “what is holistic medicine” is, in essence, everything. Holistic healing means healing your mind, spirit, and body altogether.
Holistic healers see the body as only one element in a greater being. Physical health is essential, but it’s just a part of the equation. To promote balance and overall health, the other parts of your person must be healthy as well.
The concept of what is holistic medicine makes perfect sense if you think about it like this: you can be the fittest person in the world, but if you’re not happy, what’s the point? You can be happy with any physical health conditions, but that doesn’t mean you’re healthy.
Holistic medicine treats more than just the symptoms you’re presently experiencing. Holistic doctors work with you to develop a plan that will treat the underlying cause of the problem, so it doesn’t resurface in the future.
The Principles of Holistic Medicine
One of the primary principles of holistic healing is that treating symptoms is only a part of the equation. Sure, it’s important to get rid of that persistent headache at the moment, but treatment shouldn’t stop there. You should learn how to prevent the cause of your headache, so it doesn’t return when your prescription runs out.
Holistic healers don’t depend on Western medicine alone. They aren’t shackled by the idea that new technology is the only way to reach the root of our problems. We’ve been using ancient healing techniques for hundreds or even thousands of years, and there’s a reason it’s lasted so long.
Holistic healers also believe in the innate healing capabilities of people. Healing a person’s body isn’t as simple as throwing drugs at a problem. As we’ve said, this is only treating the symptoms. Holistic healers try to teach their patients to tap into their internal healing abilities through meditation and other practices.
These healers also subscribe to the idea that healing is a team effort. They value the relationship between the physician and patient – as any good doctor should. They want to establish an open, honest, line of dialogue that will get to the root of your problem and a subsequent answer to the cause.
Holistic practitioners tend to look at trends in diseases rather than the diseases themselves. They believe that illnesses are largely due to an imbalance of some kind, whether that be physical, mental, spiritual, etc.
They aren’t closed-minded to established ideas. They don’t deny things like genetic predisposition, but rather look at a person’s lifestyle and spiritual well being as possible causes or accelerants to diseases and other illnesses.
Homeopathic Vs. Holistic
A lot of people lump homeopathic medicine and holistic medicine into the same boat. They are similar in some ways, but they aren’t the same thing. A homeopathic and holistic practitioner might recommend the same treatment, but homeopathic remedies can turn a lot of people off when they hear about them.
Holistic and homeopathic practitioners both deal in alternative forms of medicine. A holistic doctor might prescribe chiropractic therapy or another form of alternative medicine, just as a homeopathic healer would.
They both look at your body, mind, and soul as different pieces of a bigger machine. It’s easy to see why people confuse the two, but the stigma surrounding homeopathic healing often invades the holistic healing space.
The place where holistic and homeopathic medicine differs is in the variety of treatment options. A lot of doctors tend to disregard homeopathic medicine as “junk science.” A homeopathic healer might prescribe herbs and supplements to treat a cold, while a doctor will say that prescription drugs and antibiotics are a more effective solution.
It’s important to remember that while homeopathic healers are often holistic healers, every holistic healer is not a homeopathic healer. A doctor can examine your mind, body, and spirit without being shackled by the constraints of alternative medicines.
Holistic healers use every resource at their disposal when it comes to your health. They will use some Eastern healing methods to balance your health, but they’ll also use technology, science, and pharmaceuticals when you need them. They believe that Western medicine has its benefits, but that it doesn’t hold all of the solutions you might need.
A holistic healer will prescribe tests and drugs that will remedy your ailments as a traditional doctor would, but they don’t stop there. They will also try to help educate you on some Eastern healing techniques like meditation and acupuncture that might help the underlying cause of what’s bothering you.
Advantages of a Holistic Approach
Holistic healing provides multiple benefits to the patient as an alternative to traditional medical practices. You’ll still receive treatment for your symptoms, but a good holistic healer will get to the root of what’s ailing you.
Holistic medicine aims to create a healthier version of you. You will receive some help for your immediate symptoms, but your doctor will also work with you to treat what might be causing your problems in the first place.
You’ll have a discussion with your holistic practitioner instead of receiving a prescription and walking out of the office. They’ll talk to you about some everyday changes you can make in your life that will improve your mental, physical, social, and spiritual wellbeing.
A lot of people tend to neglect the spiritual element of healing. If you have, you might need to start practicing meditation and becoming familiar with your true self. A holistic healer will talk to you about these options, and get you started along the right path.
Fewer Recurring Symptoms
Since holistic doctors seek to fix the cause of a problem, there’s less of a chance you’ll experience recurring symptoms in the future.
If you go to the doctor for persistent headaches, for instance, they’ll offer you some lifestyle changes that will prevent the headaches from returning. This practice is a lot more favorable to relying on prescription drugs to fix the problem.
Of course, holistic doctors might prescribe something to ease your pain. That’s not all they’ll do, though. They’ll educate you on some alternative healing methods that might prevent your symptoms from ever returning in the future.
Finding a Holistic Practitioner
You can likely find a holistic practitioner with an office near you, but there are a few things you should keep in mind. You should plan your visit as you would to any physician, and do your homework before you go. Here are a few tips you can use when searching for a local holistic practitioner.
Not All Holistic Healers are Equal
This tip is relatively straightforward: you shouldn’t go to just anyone because they call themselves a holistic healer.
There are bad doctors out there, and there are good doctors. The same is true for holistic practitioners and physicians. Some are better than others, and you should do your research before your visit.
You can use friends, medical associations, or the internet for a credible recommendation. Those who have visited holistic medical practitioners will be able to give you the best advice on who is the real deal.
Along the same lines, you should visit a holistic healer with a medical background. Some healers receive certifications with no official medical backing.
This is fine if you’re going to a holistic massage therapist or acupuncture session, but if you’re looking for a holistic physician, you need one with a substantial medical background and some hospital affiliations.
Value the Relationship
As we covered above, one of the staples of holistic medicine if the relationship between the physician and their patient. You should feel comfortable in the doctor’s office, and your physician should make you feel at ease throughout your evaluation.
You should probably look elsewhere if you don’t feel connected to the physician. Likewise, you should feel as though you spent the appropriate amount of time with your doctor when you leave the office.
If you feel like the time was too short, then they didn’t do enough to make you feel comfortable. Do some more research and find a practitioner who is a better fit for your needs.
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