At Sunlighten, we work with numerous medical doctors and other health care providers, providing infrared saunas for their practices and clinics, and even for their personal use. The folks we work with in the health care field – even those in traditional medicine – recognize the value in practicing complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) treatments.
The alternative medicine movement is certainly gaining ground globally, among both patients and mainstream medical practitioners. Nearly 40% of American adults have tried some form of alternative therapies. Sometimes, these treatments are used in combination with more conventional therapies like medication and surgery; other times, the alternative treatment is used alone.
Some of the most popular CAM therapies include acupuncture, Reiki, massage, chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation; herbs and essential oils; meditation; yoga and tai chi and diet-based therapies like macrobiotic diets.
What are YOUR favorite alternative medicine therapies? Do you have any alternative medicine secrets to share?
Some other great alternative medicine treatments we like:
Therapeutic mud baths
A homemade (or spa-made) bath made of clay, peat moss and sulfur-dense mineral water can have anti-inflammatory effects. Those with worn-out joints or rheumatoid arthritis will find relief in the mud. Baths containing Dead Sea or Epsom salts are helpful to relax sore muscles – such as those that accompany chronic fatigue syndrome and Lyme disease.
Aromatherapy uses the power of distinctive-smelling essential oils derived from fragrant plants. Essential oils promote stress relief and relaxation, promoting general wellness. Many even use these oils as a supportive therapy to help ease side effects of treatments like chemotherapy.
Due to the centuries-long practices of our human ancestors, many active ingredients in Western medicine pharmaceuticals were first discovered in plants. While modern medicine has largely turned away from the power of herbs, their healing properties do still exist. Black cohosh, sage tea, chamomile, garlic, ginger, echinacea, St. John’s Wort, and many, many other herbs are important parts of many wellness plans.
Body manipulation includes chiropractic but is absolutely not limited to that practice. Body manipulation describes a CAM approach that teams the body and mind to promote health. This includes yoga and tai chi. The body movements and breathing techniques improve fitness, flexibility and relaxation as well as a general spriritual wellness.
We’ve got lots to say about this one! 🙂
Some find that regular sauna use helps keep viruses away during cold and flu season. Many of our customers use their infrared sauna for relaxation, stress relief and weight control/loss.
Many more find more specific health benefit in the regular use of infrared saunas. Studies have shown infrared sauna use to lower blood pressure. Others use the detoxification properties of infrared heat technology to address their chronic illness and heavy metal toxicity. Still others find daily pain relief – both muscle pain and joint pain – in the infrared sauna.
Cupping combines body manipulation with the more Eastern idea of energy stimulation. Heated glass cups are placed on top of the skin, in locations which strategically correspond to what are believed to be energy axes. Suction pulls the skin up into the cup, increasing circulation and stimulating energy flow.
Reiki, performed by a trained Reiki master, involves light touch on, or slightly above, specific areas of the body in an effort to balance energy throughout the body. The Reiki master lays hands on various parts of the body, delivering natural vibrational “heated” energy which is used by the body to heal.
Vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and macrobiotic diets can all be used to address modern health issues. The elimination of caffeine, alcohol, gluten, animal products and sugar are seen by many as a necessary and positive detoxification of the human body.
*It is extremely important to talk freely with all of your health care providers and practitioners – both Western/traditional and alternative/Eastern/CAM – so that all involved are aware of the various therapies you might be trying or considering. Just as medicines may interfere with one another, some alternative therapies might affect the effectiveness of other treatments (or your general health condition might make a particular therapy ill-advised).