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There are a lot of alternative therapies and medicines out there that don’t work for everyone. When some of them work, it’s generally agreed that it’s because of a placebo effect, which means that it’s working because of a patient’s belief in that treatment rather than because of the treatment itself. But there are some alternative remedies that do actually work to improve your wellness and health. Here are some examples…
A technique derived from ancient Chinese medicine, acupuncture involves fine, sterile needles being inserted at certain points of the body for therapeutic purposes and to promote the body’s self-healing process. The needles stimulate sensory nerves under the skin, resulting in the body producing endorphins, which relieve pain. Acupuncture can successfully treat conditions including back pain, neck pain, migraines, anxiety, nausea caused by chemotherapy, depression, insomnia, sciatica and rheumatoid arthritis. With very few side effects, acupuncture can seriously improve the quality of life for many people when performed alongside other treatments.
A group of disciplines originating in India, yoga has been around for five thousand years and is a workout for both the mind and body. Hatha yoga is one of the most popular styles, focusing on more physical movement along with pranayamas, which are breath-controlled exercises. Most yoga sessions tend to involve some form of meditation and postures that flex and stretch different muscles. Yoga can lessen chronic pain, such as back pain, arthritis, headaches and carpal tunnel syndrome, and has been proven to improve people’s muscle strength, endurance, flexibility, and cardio-respiratory fitness. It can also help mental health and has been studied as a form of treatment for depression and anxiety.
Hypnosis is a trance-like state in which you’re in a state of deep relaxation and altered consciousness, meaning that you have heightened focus and concentration. It’s a form of psychotherapy that uses relaxation to help you change your behaviors and learn to live a healthier lifestyle through a deep state of calm that allows you to hyper focus in a way that would not otherwise be possible. Trained hypnotherapists can take you back to when you learned how to respond to certain situations in an unhealthy way, and separate the memory from the learned behavior so you can respond in a better way in the future. Hypnosis can help conditions such as depression, anxiety, irritable bowel syndrome, grief, chronic pain, addiction, and phobias, but some people respond better to hypnotherapy than others.
Chiropractic adjustment is a common treatment for lower back pain and involves trained specialists using their hands or instruments to apply controlled, sudden force and manipulation to areas of your spine that aren’t functioning properly. The aim of it is to reduce spinal irritability and improve movement and function. Chiropractic medicine can help improve back pain, headaches, arthritis, asthma, neck pain and scoliosis. Like practitioners of acupuncture, chiropractors believe that the body has the innate ability to heal itself, and aims to create an environment within the body to help facilitate that.
Remember that alternative therapies and medicines are complementary – use them alongside more traditional scientific and medicinal approaches, and not instead of them.