Herbs being ground in a mortar and pestle

There are several different healthcare approaches used within the field of mental health treatment. Considering the numerous approaches, it is essential to know what methods are available for you, especially when considering treatment for you or your loved one.

The most common and popular healthcare approach used in the medical field is allopathic medicine, otherwise known as modern medicine. Allopathic medicine is the system of medical doctors and other professionals that work to treat symptoms and diseases using traditional methods, such as drugs, radiation, or surgery.

Although allopathic medicine is evidence-based, offering some of the most effective treatment solutions in healthcare, there are incredible benefits of other healthcare approaches as well. For example, consider all of the medical treatments that do not fit in the category of mainstream medicine.

What Is Complementary and Alternative Medicine?

Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) might also be called integrative or alternative medicine. Holistic treatment also falls under the category of CAM. CAM is an umbrella term for practices and services and for medical products that are not considered a part of standard medical care.

Complementary medicine aims to complement traditional medical or mental health treatments by offering unique treatment options in addition to conventional treatment. On the other hand, alternative medicine is used instead of standard treatments.

There are many different reasons why people turn to CAM. Some examples include:

  • Using different practices to try and treat or cure symptoms
  • Coping with side effects of specific medical treatments
  • Comforting the mind and body from any anxiety, worry, and general distress
  • Being proactive about doing something positive to help strengthen personal health
  • Gaining a sense of personal control
  • Increases willingness to have a positive outlook on the health condition

Understanding Available CAM Treatments

There are different categories of treatments available in the field of CAM. These general categories include:

  • Mind-Body Therapies
  • Biologically Based Practices
  • Manipulative and Body-Based Practices
  • Biofield Therapy
  • Whole Medical Systems

Mind-body therapies focus on connecting mental focus with motor movement or breathing to encourage an individual to reach a state of relaxation. Mind-body therapies might include meditation, biofeedback, yoga, tai chi, and creative expression.

Biologically-based practices are proactive treatments that come from nature. These practices include the use of vitamins and other dietary supplements, cannabis to relieve chronic pain, and herbs.

Manipulative, body-based practices bring attention to different areas of the body to promote healing. These practices might include massages, chiropractic care, or reflexology.

Biofield therapies focus on the flow of energy within the body. Therapists may use the therapeutic pressure of their hands to assist in energy flow. Biofield therapies might include the use of reiki or other therapeutic touches.

Whole medical systems recognize the different healing systems that have evolved around the entire world. These systems recognize how culture connects and evolves the healing process. Examples of whole medical systems include homeopathy, naturopathic medicine, and acupuncture.

Is CAM Right for Me?

If you have not ever been introduced to CAM, you may wonder if it is something that will work for you. Significant benefits to consider are that many complementary therapies are known to reduce stress and increase feelings of relaxation alongside general wellbeing. Many CAM therapies work to address and reflect on personal emotions while increasing your sense of health overall. Most CAM treatments are proven to be safe and effective, especially complementary medicine on its own.

While there are notable benefits regarding CAM, there are also factors to be aware of.

First, CAM utilizes a wide variety of nutritional products such as dietary supplements, vitamins, and herbal supplements. These natural products do not have to be approved by the FDA (Federal Drug Administration) before being sold to the public. This means it is imperative for you to decide what is best for you and your physical and mental health.

If you choose to try CAM, consider the following:

  • Consider taking supplements in recommended doses, and never by themselves.
  • Talk with your doctor before you begin any new supplements, even vitamins, regardless of how safe you might believe them to be.
  • Talk with your doctor about your other health habits alongside your use of CAM.
  • Talk with your doctor to discuss if the practices of CAM that you will use will complement your traditional treatment modalities or if it could interfere with your recovery.

If your physician is unfamiliar with the supplements or vitamins you would like to start taking, it is essential to engage in thorough research to understand the risks and benefits of doing so.

It is essential to understand all the different types of healthcare treatment approaches available for mental health. Allopathic medicine (modern medicine) is the most common as it provides evidence-based treatment modalities to help address and cure symptoms and diseases. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) works alongside traditional treatment methods to help relieve any side effects caused by traditional medical treatment. CAM holds a variety of important benefits, especially in the field of mental health. Sabino Recovery utilities both allopathic medicine and naturopathic medicine. We understand that recovery from mental health disorders and substance abuse is complex. It is essential that your treatment from this distress is customized to fit your individual needs. We offer numerous different treatment approaches to help individualize your care. Recovery is more than just treatment; it promotes better health and encourages a person to live among peace and joy. For more information on our treatment options, call Sabino Recovery today at (844) 227-7014