Alternative Medicine (or fringe medicine) is a number of practices that are used instead of standard medical treatments. These practices claimed to have the healing effects, but such effects are unproven or even disproven and harmful. In this way the medical community basically does not recognize alternative medicine as conventional medical approaches.
There is such a broad field named complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). This field of knowledge exists in order to prevent and treat various conditions using appropriate techniques (herbal medicines, healing touch and energy).
Let’s figure out the main difference between alternative and complementary medicine - it is important to understand that the practices of the last one is used not instead (as alternative) but together with standard medical practices, complementing (not replacing) them.
There are a great variety of health care practices, therapies and products in alternative medicine. They all share one property – healing which is not based on the scientific method. Alternative medicine practices may fall under different classifications, for example, according to their cultural origins or by the types of beliefs upon which they are based. So the types of the popular practices are the following:
- Unscientific belief systems (naturopathy, homeopathy);
- Traditional ethnic systems (traditional Chinese medicine, ayurveda);
- Supernatural energies (biofield therapy, bioelectromagnetic therapy, chiropractic, reiki);
- Holistic therapy (mind-body medicine);
- Religion, faith healing, and prayer (Christian faith healing, shamanism);
- Herbal remedies and other substances used.
As we can see, a wide range of the practices reaches the ancient times and is closely connected with such fields as religion, philosophy, psychology, biology, etc. Alternative medicine practice such cures as herbal treatment, spiritual healing, special massage and exercises techniques, vitamins, dietary supplements and so on.
Why people use it instead of getting professional medical help? Some of them have a strong believe in the healing effect, some want to try alternative medicine in order to avoid possible medical interferences and some just haven’t got any other choice (they have already try standard medicine treatment and it couldn’t help).
Nevertheless a rather big percent of people in the world uses the methods of alternative medicine. This field of knowledge is quite complicated as it has no scientific confirmation and causing a lot of doubts about its treatment effects. Don’t forget to take into account close connections of alternative medicine with such complex and all-encompassing disciplines like religion, philosophy, psychology and so on as well as a great variety and individual features of the field of alternative medicine in different world regions. So don’t worry if you become puzzled with some tasks and remember that a lot of professional essay services are ready to give you all the necessary help to master this discipline.