Alternative medicine … What are we talking about?
Complementary and alternative therapies (or treatments, medicines, approaches) are not part of traditional or mainstream medicine that is based on research and generally used in the Canadian health care system. Surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy and chemotherapy are examples of classic treatments for prostate cancer.
Do you really know how complementary therapies differ from alternative therapies?
The various therapies
Relaxation techniques such as massotherapy, acupuncture, meditation, and even laughter can have extremely positive effects. Such methods can boost your immune system, relieve pain, reduce stress hormones, and lower blood pressure.
The same is true of yoga. Yoga promotes relaxation and improves your quality of sleep during treatment. Certain complementary therapies are better suited for some situations, for example:
- Men undergoing hormone therapy who want to reduce their risk of cardiac disease, diabetes, and bone loss
- Men undergoing chemotherapy who want to alleviate side effects such as pain or nausea
- Men who need help decreasing side effects of surgery or radiation therapy such as loss of bladder control
Research has shown that a number of complementary therapies can be used safely alongside conventional cancer treatments. Some people feel that using a complementary therapy help to give them a sense of control and the feeling of being more involved in their health care. Other people believe that complementary therapies help to improve their quality of life.
Why you embark…
Alternative medicine is not about standard approved drugs or treatments. We are talking more about medicinal plants, magic powder, vitamins... Many people are turning away from conventional medicine because they fear the operating table or the side effects of drugs. In contrast, alternative therapy is attractive because it is not like conventional treatments, less risky and less likely to cause direct harm. Remember that unlike complementary therapies, alternative therapies are used as a replacement for other prostate cancer treatment options.
Alternative therapies are like wishful thinking
Within the ranks of alternative practitioners and their clients, ideas without any scientific basis are like magic tricks. Some people reject conventional medicine simply because it isn’t magic. What needs to be understood is that alternative therapies are not research-based and have not been shown to be effective and safe in treating cancer. Using alternative therapies while delaying or refusing conventional treatments can have serious health consequences including the growth of cancerous tumours or the spread of cancer to other parts of the body.
In addition, for the many people who already use alternative medicine, the lack of scientific knowledge behind these therapies may pose a risk or cause adverse reactions because of incorrect dosages, improper product use, or drug interactions between two treatments.
Caution is therefore a MUST and you should always seek advice from your doctor, pharmacist or dietitian.
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Written by PROCURE. © All rights reserved - 2018