The popularity of alternative medicine is continually growing in South Florida and is particularly trending in the Miami metropolitan area. A large percentage of adults choose to use alternative medicine, also known as holistic medicine. The concept of “integrative medicine”, which is the combination of alternative and mainstream therapies, is also becoming more familiar in Miami. With integrative medicine, traditional and cultural healing methods are merged with evidence-based modalities in order to wholly treat the physical, emotional, and spiritual root of illness. Of the alternative therapies, acupuncture and Chinese medicine are the most common types of holistic medicine in Miami.
The Power of Chinese Medicine
The practice of traditional Chinese medicine in Miami is based in healing concepts that are over 2,000 years old. In contrast to modern Western medicine, Chinese medicine focuses on the health of bodily functions instead of vital organs (e.g. promoting good digestion rather than trying to “fix” the stomach). Chinese medicine suggests that the body has a vital, flowing energy (chi) and that disease arises when this energy does not move freely throughout the body. The goal of this treatment method is to restore the balance and flow of one’s chi.
Elements of traditional Chinese Medicine include:
- herbal medicine
- exercise therapy
- massage therapy
- dietary therapy
The Ancient Art of Acupuncture
Rooted in traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture is an ancient treatment used for health and well-being. Acupuncture in Miami follows many Chinese principals and is often used to supplement modern, evidence-based treatments. For example, many cancer patients find that acupuncture helps to mediate the side effects of chemotherapy. Acupuncture involves the insertion of tiny needles into the skin to stimulate the flow of chi to different areas of the body. A common misconception is that acupuncture is painful, when in fact, most patients do not experience any pain during the process. Acupuncture is used to treat a variety of symptoms and disease, including headache, chronic pain, anxiety, and osteoarthritis. Interestingly, there is some science that suggests acupuncture triggers the release of the body’s natural pain-killers.