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Complementary and Alternative Therapies

Many widely practiced philosophies can be utilized when a diagnosis of Cancer has been made. In this article we explore the differences between Complementary and Alternative Therapies, collectively referred to as CAM. More and more, integrative medicine is used in the treatment of many diseases.

With mainstream society becoming increasingly more self aware, many patients are opting to use complementary and alternative therapies to aid the recovery process.

How Cancer Occurs

CancerIt is considered that when the body is unwell overall, it is more likely that tumors will occur. In simple terms, the occurrence of Cancer is due to the cells of the body behaving in an unusual manner.

That is, cells naturally reproduce, but occasionally a unnatural patterning emerges where cells will begin to multiply and divide themselves in a manner which is abnormal. These cells continue to malfunction until a noticeable mass develops .This mass can be benign or malignant, the latter of which is Cancer.

Integrative Medicine: Exploring The Differences

Not to confuse the two, complementary medicine is used in conjunction with conventional treatments. Alternative therapies are those which are sought after as a replacement to the more orthodox chemical based lines of treatment. Some examples of complementary therapies are acupuncture, acupressure, massage, yoga, aromatherapy and counseling.

Alternative therapies would consist of specific dietary plans including but not limited to herbal inclusions. Psychological and spiritual healing programs are used to stimulate the immune system, whilst prayers and detoxification programs are also used frequently. These alternative methods treat the disease by taking a view of the body as a whole diseased entity.

Using Hypnotherapy As Complementary Treatment


With regard to complementary therapy, it is worth noting that Hypnotherapy has also played a major role in the treatment of Cancer. Dr.Milton Erickson was a pioneer in pain control using Hypnosis and spent more than forty years visiting Cancer patients to assist with pain control. He was successfully able to either alleviate pain, or remove pain altogether.

Since Hypnotherapy can also be used successfully for guided imagery and deep relaxation, it stands to reason that this is an effective complementary therapy.

Increasing tolerance to stress and pain is of major benefit to the Cancer patient since it affords the patient a different perception of what is happening to them, and affords them more coherence when they would otherwise be incapable. The mind-body connection plays a significant role in the recovery process.

In Summary

Although the choices are vast, many who regularly practice yoga, meditation, self hypnosis and similar philosophies are generally better equipped mentally when dealing with such a traumatic event such as a Cancer diagnosis. The ability to relax plays a critical role in dealing with nausea associated with chemotherapy, pain, and of course obvious high stress levels.

When conventional medicine must be used, it is certainly worth exploring which of these Complementary therapies can be integrated into your care and recovery.


Try a Natural Alternative to Sleeping Pills

From over-the-counter sleep-aids to prescription sleeping pills, many options exist for those who have trouble sleeping and staying asleep for a full eight hours each night. Unfortunately, nonprescription sleep-aids don’t always work very well, and prescription meds come with warnings that sound far worse than the sleepless nights they’re meant to remedy.

It’s best to avoid any type of sleep-aids that aren’t natural, if possible, since for some they do more harm than good. Natural alternatives to sleeping pills are safe, they have few side-effects, and they can be very effective.

Muscle Relaxation

Tense muscles can cause restlessness, and a simple relaxation technique is a natural alternative to sleeping pills. After laying down in a comfortable position, begin relaxing the body one area at a time. Begin by clearing the mind, and concentrate on relaxing the body beginning with the toes, the feet, the ankles, and so on until each muscle is fully relaxed.

You’ll feel as if you’re floating on a cloud, and you might even fall asleep before you finish mentally and physically relaxing the entire body.

Linden Tea

Linden TeaA warm cup of linden tea can be just as effective as over-the-counter remedies, and it’s one of the best natural alternatives to any type of sleeping pills. Avoid caffeine in the evening, and enjoy a cup of linden tea about an hour before going to bed. It contains natural ingredients that induce sleep, and it’s a healthy alternative to sleeping pills.

You’ll find linden tea in stores that sell natural tea and herbal products, or you can order it online.

Controlled Breathing

Deep breathing can help you fall asleep faster, and it’s a completely natural alternative to sleeping pills. Find a comfortable position for sleeping, and take slow deep breaths. Think relaxing and comforting thoughts while breathing deeply and slowly, and be sure to let it all out before taking another breath.

A few minutes of deep breathing is all it takes for some people to fall into a deep and relaxing sleep without the use of sleeping pills.

Fresh air

Fresh air has a cooling effect and heps to relax. A cool bedroom environment is key to getting a good night’s sleep. But opening the window in a big city, you let smoke and bad odors in. That’s why many people use air conditioners or portable ozone generators. They provide fresh air for you and help to sleep beter.

White Noise

An electric fan or a noise machine is a natural alternative to sleep medication, and many people find they can’t sleep without some form of white noise. Consider running a fan or a sound machine instead of sleeping in silence. You’re less likely to be awakened by every little sound, and you’ll find you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

Just as the sound of a humming car motor or a washing machine lulls a baby to sleep, a fan or a noise machine will help put anyone to sleep without the use of sleeping pills.

Write Down Bedtime Thoughts

Write Down Bedtime ThoughtsNighttime brings on a flood of worries for some, and even if nothing is wrong, some people search their minds to find things to worry about. Instead of lying awake worrying or taking sleeping pills and staying awake worrying anyway, write down your thoughts in a journal. If you have something you must do the following day, write it down, and clear your mind.

Once your mind is clear you’ll be able to fall asleep without thinking of what happened, what’s going to happen, or what might happen. This is a natural way to relax the mind, and along with the aforementioned methods, it’s good alternative to sleeping pills of any kind.