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Alternative versus Traditional Medicine

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posted on Jul, 1 2013 @ 09:07 PM
Good evening, all! I'm curious to know what my fellow ATS members think about alternative medicine and it's importance in the medical field.

I think it's safe to saying that most of us, especially those in North America, have been raised under the principle that the only true type of medical treatment lies in the form of traditional medicine.  We get a cold or the flu and we call our MD's office.  If it's something that can be treated with a pill, a prescription is usually the FIRST line of defense.

I've noticed a gradual shift in this mindset and I think that more people are becoming advocates of modalities without the alternative care field (treatments such as massage therapy, acupuncture, reflexology, energy healing, homeopathy, naturopathic treatment, chiropractic care, etc.)

This shift has made me curious about the following: given a choice, which of these forms of medical treatment would you prefer?  Traditional medicine, which is ultimately treated via use of pharmaceuticals, or alternative care, which takes into consideration the treatment of the whole individual - mind, body and spirit - and for which traditional pharmaceuticals are used as a form of LAST choice.

Do you think that alternative treatments, typically excluded under insurance policies, should be covered?  Would this have a bearing on your choice?

Lastly, for those of you in the US, do you feel that true health benefits of alternative care have been downplayed in order to ensure that the masses keep using traditional medicine?

If you're kind enough to take a moment to respond, please let me know your gender, location and age bracket so that I can assess your answers by demographics.

I'll start with my own answers:

Yes, I would definitely prefer to try alternative medicine before exposing myself to the toxicity of many pharmaceuticals.
Yes, I think alternative treatment should definitely be covered by insurance policies.
Yes, I have hesitated about using alternative therapies because of the lack of coverage.
Yes, I think that healthcare and big pharma are two of the most powerful industries in the US and given the affect that alternative and holistic care would have on their bottom line, the validity of alternative medicine has definitely been downplayed.
I am a female living in the US and am in my late 40's.

Thanks for taking a moment to voice your opinions.


posted on Jul, 1 2013 @ 09:30 PM
Female, USA. I would like to see alternative treatments covered. As for choosing traditional or alternative methods, it would depend on what I was being treated for. Before I got an aggressive cancer, I always said I would choose an alternative route, but when you're sitting there in the reality of losing your very life...let's just say I changed my mind quickly. I had a lumpectomy and 4 lymph nodes removed, chemo and also radiation. They saved my life.

I used to study herbs and was always enchanted and fascinated by them, but pretty much use them in beauty products and very few for medicinal purposes. People always assume if it is an herb, it is safe, not realizing that you could have an adverse reaction to them just as you would a prescribed med. Some herbs may work very well for one person and do nothing for another, same with prescribed meds. It's all trial and error in finding what works best for you.

I wish I could afford reiki sessions. I tried it once at some convetion years ago and loved it.
edit on 1-7-2013 by Night Star because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 1 2013 @ 09:39 PM
I feel healthy for not seeing a doctor... last time was in 83 and me 43...healthy as a horse

posted on Jul, 1 2013 @ 09:39 PM
reply to post by Night Star

Night Star - Thank for responding and I agree with many of your comments. Yes, herbs can be dangerous if used incorrectly and I would advocate some type of licensing for treatment with any external substance.

I have to tell you, I have a friend who's a Reiki Master and she provides treatment to me for free. I went into the treatment as a cautious skeptic and have now become her most ardent supporter.

posted on Jul, 1 2013 @ 10:37 PM
reply to post by timidgal

Well, actually modern medicine is really the alternative medicine. The knowledge of old is time tested, maybe the exact reasons were not known but most of the old medicines worked well, and at one time most people knew of these things. Antibiotics is what really boosted the medical industry up. Look what happened though, now overuse, especially in similar agricultural antimicrobials, caused the microbes to evolve very fast. It turned out to cause a lot of problems now. No problem, clays, turmeric, passion flower, and a few good herbs and tree barks can still kill these microbes. These things require re-population of the gut flora though.

We are being steered by society to eat things or not eat things that cause us to need medications. I don't know who is starting these rumors and half truths. I know they are being repeated a lot without people researching the research completely including studying the parameters of the testing.

I try to research all medicine. Not just Modern medicine. Places that have socialized medicine are doing all right, people get healed faster and the right tests are done quicker instead of doctors trying to make sure their friends don't get layed off for lack of customers .

posted on Jul, 1 2013 @ 10:43 PM
I have been trying different types of *traditional western* medicine along with Chigong and am feeling better than ever. I agree with the above- people, especially those in poverty are almost forced to eat processed and other unstable foods because they can not afford to eat organics- it is EXPENSIVE!

posted on Jul, 2 2013 @ 06:42 AM
I am female, USA. I believe the best choice for health is a combination. I do believe that many alternate treatments are effective and even superior to what western or traditional medicine has to offer.

Western medicine is aggressive, designed to seek and destroy, to use an analogy. Herbs and supplements are more about using the bodies own defenses and enhancing them. Chinese medicine is sort of inbetween.,imho. Both Chinese medicine and supplements in my experience work, but take much longer than western medicine. That being said, for aggressive cancers and bacterial infections, probably western medicine is the way to go, It should be noted that the side effects of western medicine are also more aggressive than those of supplements or chinese medicine.

Health care of any kind is expensive and most people need help affording it, so yes, it should be covered, all of it.

Western medicine tends, and this is just my opinion, to be arrogant and disregarding of the patient. Dr.'s to often get 'God' complexes. Medicine is not a science, it is an art, this can be forgotten by the practitioners. Diagnostics and treatments have become much more sophisticated, but we are not so far removed from throwing chicken bones on the floor and getting information from the patterns they make. Western medicine is practiced, not perfected.

I use chinese medicine for viruses and find it effective. Western medicine so far, is not effective, against many viruses imho.

Nothing that your going to put in your body should be taken on blind trust. Educate yourself, empower yourself about all treatments, and make informed decisions. Question western medicine and Dr.'s in particular about tests and treatments.

posted on Jul, 28 2013 @ 01:00 AM
This topic is very controversial. You are going to have extremists on both ends. Your type A Personality that has grown up brainwashed believing the body is incapable of fighting things such as the flu without the influence of drugs. It can almost become a placebo effect, having a doctor who smiles and gives you the medicine, being in an environment where there are educated individuals in the medical field and taking a drug that doctors say has been proven to help you overcome the flu is calming and your body eventually fights it off. This personality grows up with such certainty that the medical community and all doctors have their best interest in mind, and are 100% well versed in every health problem, so they have no problem taking pill after pill after pill. The problem is , this can actually change your chemical make up and create dependency and next thing you know , the smallest headache and you're desperately reaching for ibuprofen ( which is linked to other health problems, especially in the GI tract). This person will always tell you , pharmaceuticals, and all forms of conventional medicine are the only way to go, simply because they know no better.
Personality B- Will refuse pharmaceuticals even at the threat of death. Swearing by the belief that the body was designed to repair itself, and the only reason we get sick is because our immune systems become overtaxed and compromised thus breaking down the protective walls and allowing all forms of invaders, toxins, pathogens etc.. to overwhelm us and compromise our health ( true). The will swear by herbs, unconventional therapies that they feel gives them peace of mind and helps healing- yoga, reiki, meditation, acupuncture etc...
The problem lies in the fact that, most of us on this site are aware that the pharmaceutical companies are completely corrupt, and run by the elite. So the trust factors is breached right than and there. It is only expected that we would be weary of vaccines, mind altering drugs, and other pharmaceuticals that are linked to other health conditions. And even though most of us have a natural inclination towards alternative medicine. The problem is very little in alternative medicine is tangible, nor is it scientifically proven to cure cancer etc.. Now please don't think I'm cynical, or naïve. I do believe there are compounds within nature that absolutely cure cancer and the cure for many different ailments is being suppressed. The problem is that even many natural foods still are sprayed with harmful chemicals. The air we breathe is toxic, we are constantly pummelled with stress after stress- and as a result of all of this our bodies break down and get sick and we need help. The Catch 22.. When one gets so ill, many natural treatments do not work. Trust me Im saying this as something with experience with many debilitating health problems over the years. I believe there are many conspiracies out there, but not everything is a conspiracy. And just because somebody gets on a chat room and says a high school shooter was on SSRI's for depression, and comes to the conclusion SSRI anti depressants caused them to hallucinate and go crazy doesn't make it factual. The facts are many people use anti-depressants and the side effects are minimal, and they go on to lead normal , stabilized lives. My Mom is a prime example of this. Drugs saved her life.
I used to be such a huge believer that being natural and avoiding all conventional medicine was the only way I would ever slowly turn a corner and get better, but I was wrong. I strongly believe in a combination of both if the health problem is very serious. If the health problem is in it's beginning stage I would probably say go all natural and avoid conventional medicine like the plague, because alternative medicine is better for "prevention" but once the problem grows out of control sometimes you need help from conventional medicine.
This may sound a bit far out there. But if there truly are people out there suppressing the cures, and creating the very conditions within our environment that lead to us getting sick in the first place, than it would only make sense that they have the solution as well ( Why do you think Magic Johnson has has HIV for over 15+ years, and never gotten truly sick, but one could argue if you see him looking so healthy on TV he truly did get better, it's because the rich and powerful have cures). This may sound like selling out a bit, but if they have remedies that can control your health problems and make life manageable . Don't think you're giving in, by taking what you need. You're of no use to anyone, and can't enjoy any quality of life is you are dead.
I think it all comes down to balance, and analysing the health problem at hand, and seeking 2nd, 3rd, even 4th opinions , and truly follow your intuition and also the science behind healing.

posted on Jul, 28 2013 @ 02:33 AM
reply to post by Night Star

I agree that different methods for different illnesses and Cancer when life threatening needs hard-core medication and chemo seems to be sadly the most effective - or so we think because how many of us gamble with our lives?

I studied a little nutritional medicine some time ago and we had to incorporate naturapathy which I found fascinating. I like the principle its based on because in allopathetic medicine the fight is to suppress the disease whilst the naturapathic fights to express the disease and expell. This is done usually when the body goes into a fever and if you survive the fever and it breaks your body has won. Before anti-biotics this was the main way of dealing with disease and many old films show the 'panic' of the fever.

I don't have the confidence in the drugs today because greed has overtaken the whole world and its anything for a buck and so what if people die. Another thread linked HIV to vaccines which was frightening.

I noticed that the British Government has tried hard to hold back the public's interest in alternative approaches to health by regulating things like the aromatherapy oil industry so the big firms who can afford the newly imposed licenses have killed off all the smaller competition - which sucks and is down to Tony Blair. I also remember the flu vaccines that the UK bought which now appear not to be so effective.

posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 08:36 PM
You do not need to be rich to afford some medications. Herbs grow freely in the wild if you educate yourself. If you believe homeopathy works then you definitely dont need to to buy expensive medicines since you can dilute and create the remedies yourself with a little effort.

In the clinics of old, fasting was a way to help your body to concentrate on the healing process. Many were cured through this method.

There are also devices which are rumoured to have worked such as the Rife machine for curing cancer, Radionics was developed by a medical doctor, so maybe Radionics machines work too and there are other machines and gagetry which it is rumoured to work as well.

Certainly there are enough threads on here about suppressed alternative medicines and some people believed that a number of these actually worked. I would like to see the medical authorities persuing current rogue doctors as much as they persecuted 'fake' modalities. We all know this is about maintaining control on the lucrative drugs business.

I believe that energy medicine is the basis for all healing. How you get that medicine is up to you. If you can do it without poisoning yourself with orthodox drugs then your body will not have to eliminate those orthodox drugs to heal itself.

posted on Aug, 8 2013 @ 07:26 AM
Tim Minchin says it best for me:

"By definition", I begin "Alternative Medicine", I continue "Has either not been proved to work, Or been proved not to work. Do you know what they call "alternative medicine" That's been proved to work? Medicine.

Personally, if I am sick, my first move is to figure out why I'm sick / what I've got. If it's just a cold or a flu (or something equally as benign), I do nothing except maybe lay in bed if it's bad and drink lemon honey tea if my throat is sore. If it's worse or if it's persistent or I am troubled by my symptoms in some way, I see a doctor and go from there. I've only been sick enough to require prescription medication twice that I can remember. Once was for a lung infection and the other was for a bad allergic reaction to I don't know what. In those sorts of situations, I would not give alternative therapy a second thought, for pretty much the reasons eluded to in the Tim Minchin quote.

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