When medical treatment and care strives to combine all aspects of a person, including their emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual health, it is said to be holistic in nature. Holistic medicine works with patients to help them find balance in all areas of their lives to achieve whole-self wellness and optimal health. Practitioners of holistic medicine know that this wellness can only be achieved by finding that balance that helps every part of us thrive. Each part of these four aspects is believed to be tied and interdependent upon the others, with an imbalance in one part affecting every other part.
The Principles And Treatments Used By Holistic Medicine
A respect and appreciation for the whole self is one of the foundational principles of this form of medicine and is believed to be essential to health and healing. While medical care and treatment methods are important to achieving these goals, the responsibility for achieving wellness lay with the individual, not the practitioner. Some principles that you’ll find in holistic medicine include:
- Effective healing requires us to take agency in the process
- We are a person with a disease, not the disease itself
- The patient and doctor are partners in addressing problems facing the patient
- Treatment and correction of the condition is the goal, not the symptom
This last principle plays a particularly essential role in the philosophy of holistic medicine. Too often, the medical industry seeks to treat not the underlying condition but to manage the symptoms of that condition. Holistic practitioners know this is similar to throwing a coat of paint over a decaying piece of wall. While the actual problem may be invisible, it continues to remain and do damage. This has an effect on the treatment methods used by these practitioners, which can include:
- Traditional Western Medicine, including medications and surgeries
- Alternative therapies including massage therapy, naturopathy, chiropractic, and acupuncture
- Changes to the patient’s lifestyle, including psychotherapy, diet, spiritual counseling, exercise, and more.
The principle mentioned above is clearly reflected in each of these treatment methods. Each of these methods, in their own way, seeks to correct the underlying issue of the condition being treated. Chiropractic addresses nervous and joint issues, massage therapy addresses muscular and flexibility concerns, psychotherapy helps manage mental health concerns, etc. Every one of them plays a necessary role in advancing the patient’s journey to wellness.
Are You Ready To Start Your Journey On The Road To Wellness?
Holistic medicine is a new concept for many people, and it is a distinctly different approach than that taken by many traditional practitioners. By addressing the whole person as part of treatment, steps are taken to help bring every aspect of that patient’s life into balance. Patients are seen as partners in this treatment process and the driving force behind their healing and advance on this road. Reach out to your local holistic practitioner to get started on your own journey. During your appointment, you’ll begin working with the doctor to explore every aspect of your life and what steps can be taken to bring it all into balance.