Now more than ever, people are including holistic care practices into their daily lives. Yet those who’ve never explored this wellness methodology may not entirely understand its objectives, or its differences, from modern medical applications. Today we explore how, and why, to take a holistic approach to chronic pain.
If you’ve ever dealt with or are currently dealing with a severe illness or a chronic condition, you know that conventional medicine focuses on treating the issue and its symptoms rather than caring and addressing the entire person. Not only can this type of health care result in impersonal service, but it can also lead to frustration over time. If you’re ready to make a change and take control of your healing journey and overall well-being, then holistic care could offer the answers you want.
So, what is holistic health care?
It’s about acknowledging the mind-body relationship and healing the whole person using a combination of clinically proven therapies. It’s about cultivating a strong relationship with a doctor who is totally committed to helping you feel healthy and keeping you that way.
Holistic Care Treats The Whole Person
Unlike traditional medicine, which typically concentrates on treating each symptom and ailment independently, holistic care concentrates on treating all of you. For holistic care practitioners, the principal goal is supporting you in reaching your optimal health by regaining total balance. Holistic practitioners don’t simply treat your physical symptoms. Rather, they treat your body, mind, and spirit to guarantee that you find that ideal equilibrium of wellness.
By treating the whole person, holistic health specialists acknowledge that you aren’t made up of singular parts or systems that operate independently from each other. Alternatively, each element works interdependently, and difficulty or malfunction in one system affects all others. This strategy also acknowledges that mental and spiritual problems can create physical symptoms, an interchange that conventional medical examinations have proven.
Although your awareness of holistic care may be recent, it isn’t a new method. Long before penicillin or X-rays, healers acknowledged the importance of emotional and spiritual well-being in managing physical health.
Its origins lie in traditional Indian, Chinese, and Greek practices that originated almost 5,000 years ago. In Greek, Holos means wholeness. From the Greek origin, holism is therefore having to do with the whole unit rather than as a total of its parts. Therefore, it ensues quite naturally, that holistic care is about taking into consideration the entire human being. Another example of how holistic health predates conventional medicine is the known fact that Socrates (470–399 BCE) warned against treating only one component of the body, “For the part can never be well unless the whole is well.”
Although holistic medicine declined in popularity throughout the early 20th century, as scientific and medical progressions made new types of treatments possible, many are now returning to a holistic method.
As the American Holistic Health Association (AHHA) points out, this return to holistic care may be primarily due to lower levels of satisfaction with traditional medicine. According to the AHHA, the quality of your conventional medical care equates for 10% of your health results, while your lifestyle choices account for more than 50%. As a consequence, holistic care also promotes healthy lifestyle choices such as eating a wholesome diet and exercise, which add to overall improved health and well-being.
Holistic Care Addresses Healing
To address patients’ minds, bodies, and spirits, holistic care approaches healing from multiple perspectives, drawing from both conventional and alternative therapies. These practices and treatments allow practitioners to examine each aspect of their patients, including diet, environment, spirituality, and lifestyle. Holistic health allows for very individualized care, as professionals get to know both the patient and the ailment.
Over time, holistic practitioners cultivate a strong sense of support for their patients. Since holistic care considers unconditional love one of the highest forms of medicine, practitioners address patients with warmth and use the power of hope, enthusiasm, and gratitude in their approaches to healing. This positive approach to healing can help release harmful emotions that might have surfaced after the patient’s original diagnosis or prolonged illness journey, such as anger, fear, frustration, and sadness.
To promote optimal health, holistic professionals are also known to favor prevention and identifying underlying causes instead of immediately responding to symptoms. Not only does this tend to be a more cost-effective method for health care, but it also encourages patients to re-take control of their own health and wellbeing. Holistic practitioners give patients additional strength to attain optimal health by contributing ample patient education and promoting healthy lifestyle choices.
Ultimately, holistic practitioners assert that optimal health requires more than eradicating illnesses and healing patients. Instead, it encourages patients to pursue wellness and lifestyle changes by seeking out their possible physical, mental, and spiritual qualities.
Benefits of Holistic Care
There are many benefits to integrating holistic care practices into your daily life:
- Quicker relief for pain
- Improvement of overall general health
- Understanding the need for a well-balanced lifestyle
- Awareness of keeping the environment safe and healthy
- Inclusion of more natural methods to cure ailments such as proper nutrition, exercise, detoxification and other natural non-invasive treatments
For instance, zinc and elderberry, two natural treatments, have been shown to reduce the duration of the common cold. Turmeric, a well-known root, has been confirmed to lower systemic inflammation and symptoms in individuals with arthritis. Acupuncture is an effective treatment for recurrent pain. And lastly, aromatherapy has been shown to promote healthy sleep cycles and reduce levels of anxiety of cardiac patients in an ICU.
There is a wide assortment of holistic health practices and protocols from many cultures worldwide. Finding a modality that’s best for you and that works with any other conventional therapy or medication you are taking is undoubtedly worth looking into.
Many individuals choose to combine holistic care practices along with more conventional treatments — this is known as integrative or complementary medicine. Furthermore, in many cases, some of the more ancient holistic care methods have even been incorporated into standard medical care.
Certain holistic care modalities require a trained practitioner, while others can be self-taught and explored on your own — like yoga or meditation.
Here are a few holistic modalities for you to explore:
- Neurofeedback Therapy
- Chiropractic Care
- Reiki Healing
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
- Trigger Point Therapy
- Nutritional Counseling
- Computer Regulation Thermography
Principles of Holistic Care
Holistic care is also based on the belief that unconditional love and support is an essential healer, and that each individual is ultimately responsible for his or her own health.
Other principles of holistic care include the following:
- All people have natural healing powers.
- A patient is a person, not a disease.
- Healing takes a team strategy involving the patient and doctor and examines all aspects of a person’s life utilizing a variety of health care practices.
- Treatment involves correcting the cause of the condition, not just mitigating the symptoms.
Holistic professionals use a variety of treatment procedures to help their patients take charge of their own well-being and achieve optimal health. Depending on the practitioner’s training, these may incorporate:
- Patient education on lifestyle changes. This may cover diet, exercise, psychotherapy, relationship counseling, and more.
- Alternative therapies such as acupuncture, chiropractic care, homeopathy, massage therapy, and others.
- Western medications and surgical procedures.
How to Find a Holistic Care Practitioner
With the internet an arms-reach away, you should be able to find a holistic health care practitioner quickly. Here are some points to consider in your search:
Credentials: Looking into reliability, longevity, and the multifariousness that a holistic health care practitioner has is a great place to start. This will help inform you of what to anticipate and evaluate the level of practitioner you are considering.
Modality: There are many holistic care modalities to learn about. Finding a holistic healthcare therapy that aligns with your needs, feelings, and preferences is a quintessential aspect of supporting your whole health and progress.
Availability: Be sure the holistic care practitioner you choose works with your location and schedule. Frequently, accountability and consistency make all the difference to your journey and success.
Reviews: Usually, you can obtain reviews and testimonials on the website of your potential holistic healthcare professional. Reviews can guarantee that you are going to get top-quality care.
A holistic health approach is a beautiful way to improve your health and your life. You may feel more centered, integrated, and engaged in your own healing than before. Holistic care is a topic worth investigating, and it could have transformative results regarding how you feel in many areas of your life.
Making Health Doable
We live in a time of exceptional imbalance. There are more toxins and chemicals in our food chain and environment than ever before. We face epidemic percentages of obesity and chronic illness. Most people have inadequate diet and exercise habits. Nearly everyone in our fast-paced society struggles to control daily stress, and many are troubled with reoccurring depression and anxiety.
Because of all this, individuals are worried about their health. There has never been a greater need for the holistic care approach, and people are demanding alternative medical options and actively seeking better choices for their personal wellness.
Wellness is a big, meaningful goal, and it can seem overwhelming. You know you should consume healthier foods, drink more h2O, hit the gym more regularly, sleep eight hours, give up your vices, and make more time for relaxation and recreation. But the complications of work and life can make it difficult to prioritize self-care. At times, the more you think about what you “should” be doing, the more scary wellness can seem.
Holistic doctors empower you with the information and motivation to make more suitable choices. Rather than recommending a long list of lifestyle changes, they include you in the discussion and help you discover which changes would make the biggest impression on your health. They help you set wellness milestones and then provide you with support — whether that’s a personalized program or a referral to a professional in another field.
The more you learn about holistic health care, the more you will come to know about your own body and lifestyle. Life is all about finding stability, and that means something unique to everyone. The key thing to take away from holistic care is that it is truly personal.
Do what makes YOU feel good.