The Western world is catching up to the benefits of alternative methods of healing. Here are some of the most interesting modalities and natural medicines.
Approximately one-third of Americans seek alternative forms of medicine. In addition to chiropractic medicine, yoga, and fish oils, some people are also seeking out lesser-known alternatives.
As Western culture catches up to the benefits of alternative medicines, people are discovering some of these holistic treatments.
Interested in discovering new, natural medicines and healing modalities you’ve likely never heard of? Here are 10 to get you started!
By trying some of these alternative medical options, you might unlock new ways to benefit your overall health.
1. Ayurvedic Medicine
Practitioners of Ayurvedic medicine, or Ayurveda, use techniques that were formed in India thousands of years ago. These therapies include using herbs, massages, and specialized diets. By using Ayurvedic practices, you can find a balance between the mind, body, and spirit to experience overall wellness.
For example, one of Ayurveda’s natural medicines is the use of taking turmeric to relieve inflammation.
Other Ayurveda practices include nasal irrigation, or using a Neti pot to clear the sinuses. You might also consider swishing coconut oil in your mouth. Known as oil pulling, this can help remove bacteria from your gums and teeth.
Yoga is also considered an Ayurvedic practice and an alternative healing modality.
Daily yoga and meditation can help relieve anxiety, depression, insomnia, high blood pressure, and other health concerns.
Balneotherapy involves using therapeutic water treatment. Though it dates back to 1700 BCE, balneotherapy is still used today in many European countries, such as Hungary.
Thermal baths can benefit the skin while treating a range of conditions.
For example, you might consider balneotherapy to treat chronic pain, acne, swelling, or anxiety.
Using balneotherapy involves mudpacks, douches, wraps, and long soaks. Also referred to as spa therapy, balneotherapy is an ideal modality that uses water to encourage healing.
Many natural medicines and modalities are focused on controlling bodily processes we usually can’t control.
For example, biofeedback techniques can teach patients to control their heart rate, blood pressure, skin temperature, and muscle tension. Gaining control over these bodily processes can improve conditions such as chronic pain, headaches, and high blood pressure.
Using biofeedback, patients learn a number of mental exercises and relaxation techniques. During these sessions, electrodes are attached to the skin to measure bodily responses.
Stress can impact the human body in many ways. For example, stress can increase sebum production, which increases acne. By learning how to control your physical reactions to stress, you can also reduce the negative effects stress has on the body.
Some natural medicines suck more than others, literally. Hirudotherapy involves using medical leeches to treat different ailments. While the therapy dates back to ancient times, it’s still used today.
However, doctors today use medical leeches instead of finding these creatures in the wild.
Hirudotherapy is used to treat medical ailments such as blood clotting. It’s also used to relieve venous pressure, which can reduce swelling. For some patients, it can also treat osteoarthritis and stimulate blood flow.
Don’t try this one at home.
Many natural medicines and modalities focus on treating one area to improve overall health. With reflexology, a doctor will apply pressure to your hands, feet, or ears. These body parts correspond to a different organ or system in the body.
By applying pressure to these areas, you can improve your organ function and overall health.
For example, patients with bladder function can apply pressure to the arch of their foot.
Reflexology is a great supplement to conventional medical practices for treating cancer, diabetes, asthma, kidney function, and more.
When performed incorrectly, however, this treatment option can cause bruises and some pain.
Today, there are approximately 6,000 licensed naturopathic doctors practicing in the United States. Many of these provide an array of natural medicines, reiki included.
Reiki was inspired by the idea that a life force flows through each individual. When our life force energy falls low, we experience sickness and stress. Happiness, health, and energy, on the other hand, indicate a strong life force.
During a session, a Reiki practitioner will transfer energy into the patient to promote their well-being. Reiki can also reduce pain, increase healing, promote relaxation, and benefit overall health.
You might also consider DNA activation in addition to these natural medicines, which you can read more about today.
Often used across Asian cultures, moxibustion uses mugwort herb, or moxa, either directly or indirectly on the patient.
For indirect moxibustion treatment, the herb is ground into a fluff. Then, the practitioner uses acupuncture needles to apply the moxa.
Moxibustion is often used to fight colds and dampness within the body.
It’s also used to treat feverish diseases and weakness.
8. Electroconvulsive Therapy
Also referred to as ECT, electroconvulsive treatment was created in 1938 to help mentally ill patients. The theory is that ECT allows the brain to reroute itself.
Considered a last resort among natural medicines, ECT is used to treat major depression when patients don’t respond to other treatments. It’s also used to treat bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and catatonia.
While used worldwide, ECT is no longer regulated officially within the United States.
9. Fire Cupping
Like many natural medicines, fire cupping originated in Asian. During this treatment, fire is placed in a glass cup, then held against the patient’s skin. These cups are often bell-shaped and left for about 20 minutes.
Fire cupping treats pain, arthritis, swelling, and can ease depression.
This healing modality involves drilling a hull into the skull, exposing the dura mater. Trepanation can relieve pressure, thereby curing migraines, seizures, and some mental disorders.
Today, this procedure is referred to as a craniotomy to treat hematomas.
Heal For Real: 10 Lesser-Known Natural Medicines & Healing Modalities
While they’re lesser-known, these natural medicines and healing modalities are still quite effective. With these treatment options, you can relieve pain and improve your overall health.
Make sure to consult a doctor or practitioner before trying one of these methods for yourself.
Searching for more health guides? Check out the Wellness section for more weird, health-related new stories!