Benefits of Holistic Medicine Why is Holistic Medicine Better?

Many proponents of holistic medicine and health care practices feel that the benefits of holistic medicine are better than other forms of medicine for many different reasons. One of these is that holistic medicine can work in conjunction with more conventional forms of medicine while also using alternative approaches for patients to work towards attaining their optimal health. 

Holistic medicine is based on the science and art of healing that addresses the patient as a whole person made up of their body, mind and spirit. While holistic medicine is often used to seek cures for health problems and disease, it does not just focus on the symptoms of a physical problem. It will also address other aspects of the patient’s physical, mental and spiritual health. 

Holistic medicine integrates conventional and alternative therapies to promote optimal health while preventing and treating disease and other health problems. Holistic medicine seeks to balance the body and looks for underlying causes of health problems that may not necessarily seem like they would be connected, such as a person’s stress level, sleep habits, amount of physical activity, their diet, interpersonal relationships, and/or lifestyle factors.

Holistic medicine views prevention as preferable to problems that need to be treated. And while this is not the focus of holistic health and medicine, an added benefit of this is that in the long run, prevention often costs less money than fixing a new problem. As well, holistic health care tries to evoke a patient’s own innate healing capabilities where illness and disease are considered a manifestation of a dysfunction of the integrated systems that make up a person as a whole, not just as an isolated event. 

A holistic healthcare practitioner will typically spend a longer period of time with their patients than many conventional doctors do. They do this to learn about their patients as whole people, in order to treat them as a whole, rather than isolate their symptoms and complaints as independent of one another. A holistic doctor is likely to get to know about a patient’s home life, their work, their lifestyle, their relationships with friends, family and romantic partners, amount of physical activity, diet, sleep habits, and about the other doctors and healthcare practices they are involved with.

Holistic healthcare providers try to help patients have more positive emotional and mental health by evoking the healing power of love, hope, humor and enthusiasm, and to release toxic feelings of shame, greed, hostility, anger, grief, fear, and others that may be impacting the patient’s overall health.

Attaining optimal health is the primary goal of holistic medicine and health care. Optimal health is much more than the absence of illness or disease. Optimal, holistic health is the conscious pursuit of the highest qualities of the emotional, environmental, mental, social and spiritual aspects of the human experience. 

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The Many Benefits of Holistic Medicine

Holistic, in medical terms, means to treat a person as a whole instead of treating a single symptom or body part. This means that holistic practitioners take everything that impacts a person into account when they’re practicing medicine, they believe that the body is a single system and all body parts work together. So, rather than simply treating the body, like modern medicine does, holistic health looks at the body, mind, spirit, and emotions. While practitioners do look into mental and physical symptoms, they also look into things such as physical movement, social activity, and spirituality. People often ask, “Why is holistic medicine better?”, and the whole-body approach has several benefits.

Focuses on Preventing Illnesses

While Western medicine treats disease, holistic medicine focuses on trying to prevent it altogether. Holistic medicine focuses on helping people maintain a high level of health in general so they don’t have to worry about treating diseases. Many practitioners say that the key to their treatment is balance and believe that keeping the body in balance will help maintain optimal levels of health. Some of the different types of holistic treatment include acupuncture, acupressure, homeopathy, herbal medicine and/or supplements, massage, and yoga.

Looks at Underlying Causes

The majority of doctors who practice Western Medicine treat symptoms, and they haven’t been taught to look deeper and investigate into a patient’s underlying causes. Because holistic doctors look at their patients as a whole, they will ask questions and try to find out what’s causing certain symptoms instead of treating them. It’s easy to take a pill to get rid of a headache, for example, but if a person experiences recurring headaches holistic doctors will try to find out what’s causing them in the first place and help eliminate that original root cause.     

Long-term Health Benefits

Because holistic medicine looks at how to keep the whole person as healthy as possible, practitioners don’t concentrate on short-term solutions. Holistic medicine looks at the overall quality of health for a person’s lifetime. If, for example, a patient is experiencing back pain a holistic doctor won’t prescribe pain medicine, they might recommend daily stretches and chiropractic adjustments to improve overall posture. Having improved posture can have lifetime benefits, whereas a medication will simply take away pain on a temporary basis.

Fewer Side Effects

Almost everyone is familiar with the notoriously long lists of potential side effects from prescription medications. Natural medications can have side effects as well, but there are far fewer of them and they are not nearly as significant.    

Call Coastal Natural Health if you want to learn more about the benefits of holistic medicine.