Often referred to as Modalities of Care, Eastern Medicine, Ancient Medicine, and Ways of Knowing, these practices were simply passed down and taught within each Civilization by those who were designated as the ‘wise ones’ or healers of their community. Throughout the world, many of these applications are still routinely practiced.
However, for people living in what became Western Civilization and the administration of Western Medicine, these practices were discontinued and in fact frowned upon! Instead concentration was directed solely toward the presenting symptoms and immediate relief. While fine for some issues, overall, by not addressing the whole picture and underlying causes of illness and diseases, achieving optimum wellness in many instances has been unattainable. For centuries, a person’s state of health encompassed an assessment of their total environment: Physically, Emotionally, Mentally and Spiritually— the concepts of Holism of Care were tossed aside.
Even modern Nursing founded by Florence Nightingale, used the Holism Model for patient care with an emphasis on the immediate environment. Although there have always been a few advocating the need to recognize the Ancient/Eastern Forms of care, it has been only the past 20-25 years that healthcare providers have expressed increased need to reexamine and include these practices with the Western Medicine Model used by physicians.
Today, the general public has become more aware of the need for each individual to advocate for his/her self-care. More people want to experience a heathy life-style and they are seeking a multitude of ways to accomplish that. This includes incorporating many of these Modalities into their preventive as well as ongoing health management. Furthermore, the expectation is have these practices recognized and utilized in combination with any Western Medicine intervention. The combining of these therapies used in tandem is now referred to as -Complimentary Alternative Medicine (CAM) or Integrated Health Practices (IHP).
Below are a few of the more popular applications being used; I know there are many more—please start learning about and using them; then choose a few for yourself each and every day. Health and Prevention of Diseases begins with each of us as we participate in Self-Care activities.