Understanding Alternative Medicine Essay

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Understanding Alternative Medicine

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
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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

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