Alternative Medicine - Who Is Using Alternative Medicine Part 3 of 4

Alternative Medicine - Who Is Using Alternative Medicine Part 3 of 4

Conventional medicine has changed a great deal over the years. The change agents responsible are mostly people wanting alternative medicines as opposed to what the conventional practitioner is offering. People want to be in charge of what goes on in their lives and how it impacts on our surroundings such as eating Organic and recycling. Using alternative medicine is along these lines of being ‘natural’.

Complementary Medicine - The Best Of Both Worlds

Most people are happy to combine both conventional and alternative medicine resulting in complementary medicine. Although doctors prescribe conventional medicine they can see the importance of healthy diet and exercise assisting an obese patient and even see visiting the acupuncturist for giving up smoking as an option for you. However few want to abandon conventional medicine forever. What do you do when you have a terminal illness such as cancer? Do you carry on with conventional and hope for the best or turn to alternative and search for an answer. People with these illnesses tend to turn to alternative mostly out of desperation or from recommendations from other sufferers.

Who Is Using It?

The medical industry has produced many scientific breakthroughs over the years, such as antibiotics and cancer fighting drugs. Yet the number of alternative medicines is also growing and producing its own breakthroughs encouraging new thought and opinions on the subject. Research has found that the users of alternative medicine are:
1. Mostly women
2. Most are highly educated
3. 80% of users don’t tell their doctor
4. 70% are over 50 years of age

Why Are They Using It?

People want to be in charge of their lives and how they treat their bodies including the types of medicine they put in their body. Its about empowering people to make up their own minds on what is best. The internet has fueled this with its extent of self published blogs and resources.

Where Are They Getting Alternative Treatments?

For the alternative medicine user there are many sources available to obtain their treatments. The internet is full of alternative medicine shops, most unregulated. Some high streets have Chinese doctors, reflexologists and homeopath centers.

In the UK there are two large homeopathic hospitals in London and Glasgow with three smaller hospital units around the country. Many offer massage and reflexology as an option for depression and cancer patients at a nominal fee, cheaper than the salon.

Some surgeries have been given the option to apply for alternative therapy funding but most see it as a way to save on the drug budget rather than the willingness to get people to seek an open mind.