Alternative Medicine involves practices that are used as a replacement for conventional medicines. When Alternative Medicine is used in combination with conventional medicine it is known as Complementary Medicine. Hence "Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM)" is the common term for both the branches of medicines.
Alternative Medicine basically includes practices like metaphysical, spiritual, religious and non-European medical treatments and other new approaches that are developed for healing various ailments. The supporters of Alternative Medicine claim that alternative therapies provide services to public that are otherwise not possible through conventional medicines. This covers areas ranging from patient empowerment, providing treatments based on bio-psycho-social model of individual health, alternative methods for pain management and stress reduction etc., that are usually not included under conventional medication.
The other common features that differentiate Alternative Medicine from Conventional medicines are:
Â·Alternative Medicine takes into account the physical, social, spiritual and mental well being of an individual while suggesting treatments, whereas conventional medicines are aimed only towards the physical aspects of an individual.
Â·Alternative Medicine emphasizes on health maintenance by following principles of a healthy lifestyle like healthy diet, regular exercise, positive attitude, body hygiene, moral and spiritual values, sexuality, human relations etc. Hence the individual is kept aware about maintenance of overall health.
Â·Alternative Medicine has a unique philosophy of its own, with inexpensive methods of treatment and diagnosis, and tries to avoid the unnecessary surgical and diagnostic interferences as far as possible and does not involve intake of strong drugs to a great extent.
Â·Alternative Medicine has no side-effect or contain only minimal side-effects
Â·Alternative Medicine is the only traditional system of medicine for certain specific diseases such as degenerative diseases, collagen disorder, problem related to joints and bones and psychosomatic disorders for which there are not much options available in conventional medicine.
By Acharya KK Ayurveda Acharya
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