Conventional Western medicine is known for its separation of mind and body approach to treating disease. Where the practitioner focuses on identifying the disease and finding the best method of eradication. The method of eradication in conventional medicine almost always includes pharmaceutical drugs, surgery and radiation as treatment options. Western medicine does allow for the practitioner to study disease and learn its behavior patterns, which makes it easier to identify. Although conventional medicine is effective in treating most disease, is it the only way to effectively treat disease?
Alternative medicine is defined as a whole body approach to treating disease. It contends that the mind can help heal the body and should be used as part of the treatment plan. If the practitioner takes enough time with the patient to ask questions that include more than a descriptive narrative of the symptoms, then they could possibly use less medications and more simplistic treatment options. For example: If the practitioner asks more questions that pertain to lifestyle, diet, or exercise routine, then they could possibly see the connection to the disease in the answers given.
- Lifestyle: Does the person travel to foreign or exotic places and how often? Does the person participate in activities that include contact with at risk populations? Religious activities or practices.
- Diet: Are there any specific foods that are purposely being excluded from or added to their diet? Any herbs and all natural supplements they may be taking.
- Exercise routine: What is their definition of exercise? How much and what type of exercise are they doing each week.
While these types of questions are sometimes asked on pre-screening forms in the doctors office, many patients underestimate the importance of this type of information. Patients may only make the connection of its relevance to a specific symptom or condition if they are asked the questions by a practitioner.
Technology used in Western Medicine
Technology like CT scans, X-rays, EEGs, EKGs, and blood tests can save time and lives by revealing the presence of disease in the body. Although, in general, the use of these western medicine technological machines only occur if there is a question about a patient’s health. Even a Conventional Western medicines practitioner would hesitate to order a test like an EKG on a patient who comes in for a routine physical. Technology makes it possible for treatments to be tracked and tested for effectiveness.