How Alternative and Complementary Medicine Is Changing the Healthcare Landscape

The traditional healthcare industry continues to serve consumers with their needs and demands. Experts work double-time just to find cures to new and old diseases, invest in faster methods of diagnosing symptoms, and find better ways to help consumers prevent common diseases. The healthcare industry also tries its hardest to accommodate modern consumers’ demands and expectations, including their growing interest in complementary and alternative medicine.

Why Complementary and Alternative Medicine Is Making a Comeback

One reason why more consumers are turning to complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is because of the pandemic. The Covid-19 crisis made more people desperate in finding relief to their common health conditions and symptoms. This includes the growing anxiety, depression, and burnout among consumers.

More people became anxious, stressed out, and depressed during the crisis. The pandemic made them lose their livelihood. The financial crisis brought about by the pandemic affected their health.

Many of us also lost a loved one or two because of Covid-19. The negative feelings associated with losing a loved one can make people feel physically, emotionally, and mentally drained. Some are turning to complementary and alternative therapies and treatments such as acupuncture to relieve themselves of their pain, stress, depression, and anxiety.

Modern consumers also want a more holistic approach to healthcare. These days, many people believe that most pharmaceutical companies only operate for the sake of profit. They would rather turn to alternatives that free themselves from undesirable side effects.

Some people also like the idea that complementary and alternative medicine is compatible with their values and beliefs. Some religions believe that artificially made treatments and methods do more harm than good. With alternative medicine, they get to enjoy the freedom to choose which healthcare approach will complement what they value and believe in.

Why Complementary and Alternative Medicine Is Now Becoming Mainstream

pharmacist at a drug store

More traditional healthcare providers are keeping their minds open to the use of alternative medicine. They no longer stop their patients from exploring their options. They know that their responsibility is to state facts, share what they know that can help their patients, and offer their patients options.

Doctors now incorporate complementary and alternative medicine when helping their patients prevent and treat symptoms. For one, they encourage activities such as yoga to help patients relax, relieve stress, and improve their physical and mental health. They encourage patients to invest in the right diet to supplement their nutritional needs.

Before, traditional healthcare facilities are filled with rooms and equipment that support scientific and traditional medical diagnostic and treatment options. But now, things have changed. Many hospitals are now accommodating alternative medicine by allowing practitioners to practice their profession in their facilities.

Modern-day traditional healthcare providers also aim to do more than just help consumers treat their patients and prevent their conditions from worsening. They are now using CAM to help health the whole person, and not just their symptoms. With the growing number of studies focusing on the efficacy of alternative medicine, more healthcare practitioners are opening their minds to the alternative.

Differences Between Alternative and Complementary Medicine

Many people think alternative and complementary medicines are all but the same. In reality, many things set these two apart. Knowing the differences between alternative and complementary medicine can give you a better idea of your available alternatives to traditional healthcare.

Complementary medicine is products and practices that act as support to traditional medicine. For example, cancer patients that undergo chemotherapy can choose massage, acupuncture, and reflexology. These can help ease their treatment’s side effects.

Alternative medicine, on the other hand, is used to replace traditional healthcare practices. Many people who use alternative treatments to manage their symptoms have abandoned traditional healthcare after losing hope about the latter’s efficiency. An example of this is using chiropractic to treat back pain instead of using this to complement physical therapy.

Using Complementary and Alternative Medicine the Safe Way

Some experts are still against alternative medicine. They don’t recommend saying good to traditional treatments since some studies are still inconclusive about the effects and risks of CAM. If you are planning on embracing complementary and alternative medicine, we suggest you choose the former.

One can safely use non-traditional healthcare options by consulting their general physician and asking for the best practices before investing. Replacing traditional treatment in exchange for alternative medicine can be dangerous. Thankfully, more doctors are encouraging consumers to also try complementary medicine to better support their health and wellness objectives.

The market for complementary and alternative medicine continues to grow each year. As more consumers prioritize their health, we can expect the CAM boom once again. It is advisable that consumers stay vigilant and research before embracing the alternatives.

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