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Providing a comprehensive overview of alternative health practices and complementary therapies from a nursing perspective, this enlightening and informative resource covers the principles, techniques, research, health promotion methods and healing practices for specific illnesses and symptoms. This newly updated third edition incorporates the latest research findings, expanded resource sections, additional photographs, and thoroughly updated material. This is a perfect resource for nurses and practitioners in allied health fields who seek to expand their practice to offer wider choices to consumers of health care.
1. Integrative Healing
2. Basic Concepts Guiding Alternative Therapies
3. The Role of Evidence Based Health Care in Complementary and Alternative Therapies
UNIT II. Systematized Health Care Practices
4. Traditional Chinese Medicine
5. Ayurvedic Medicine
6. Native American Healing and Curanderismo
UNIT III. Botanical Healing
7. Herbs and Nutritional Supplements
UNIT IV. Manual Healing Methods
13. Pressure Point Therapies
14. Hand-Mediated Biofield Therapies
15. Combined Physical and Biofield Therapies
UNIT V. Mind—Body Techniques
18. Hypnotherapy and Guided Imagery
21. Music Therapy
23. Movement-Oriented Therapies
UNIT VI. Spiritual Therapies
25. Faith and Prayer
UNIT VII Other Therapies
27. Animal-Assisted Therapy
Appendix. Alternative Therapies for Common Health Problems
The profession of nursing has advanced beyond the Western biomedical model to incorporate many healing tools used by our Asian, Latino, Native American, African, and European ancestors. We are rapidly rediscovering that these ancient principles and practices have significant therapeutic value. Some see this movement as a "return to our roots." Others believe it is a response to runaway health care costs, growing dissatisfaction with high-tech medicine, and increasing concern over the adverse effects and misuse of medications. The growth of consumer empowerment also fuels this movement.
As nurses, how do we begin to assimilate thousands of years of healing knowledge? How do we begin this journey of integrating practices into our own lives? In our professional practice, how do we model healthful living? How do we help consumers choose their own healing journeys? How do we break down the barriers between conventional and alternative medicine? Learning about healing practices, like anything else, is a slow process involving a steady accumulation of bits of information and skills that eventually form a coherent pattern called knowledge. While it is possible to learn a great deal about healing practices from reading, thinking, and asking questions, you must in the long run learn about healing through participation. Without hands-on experience, you can be a good student but you can never be a great nursing practitioner of the healing arts. I trust this text will be one step in a lifelong exploration of and experiences with healing practices.
Consumers do not wish to abandon conventional medicine but they do want to have a range of options available to them includingherbs, nutrition, manual healing methods, mind-body techniques, and spiritual approaches. Some healing practices, such as exercise, nutrition, meditation, and massage, promote health and prevent disease. Others, such as herbs or homeopathic remedies, address specific illnesses. Many other healing practices do both. The rise of chronic disease rates in Western society has motivated consumers to increasingly consider self-care approaches. As recently as the 1950s, we lived in a world of curable disease, largely infectious, where medical interventions were both appropriate and effective and only 30 percent of all disease was chronic. Now, 80 percent of all disease is chronic. Western medicine, with its focus on acute disorders, trauma, and surgery, is considered to be the best high-tech medical care in the world. Unfortunately, it cannot respond adequately to the current epidemic of chronic illnesses.
Ethnocentrism, the assumption that one's own cultural or ethnic group is superior to others, has often prevented Western health care practitioners from learning "new" ways to promote health and prevent chronic illness. With consumer demand for a broader range of options, we must open our minds to the idea that other cultures and countries have valid ways of preventing and curing diseases that could be good for Western societies. Although the information may be new to us, many of these traditions are hundreds or even thousands of years old and have long been part of the medical mainstream in other cultures.
I have titled this book Complementary & Alternative Therapies for Nursing Practice because I believe we need to merge alternative approaches with our Western-based nursing practices. I have tried to provide enough information about alternative therapies to help guide our practice decisions. This text, as an overview and practical guide for nurses, does not pretend to be an exhaustive collection of all the facts and related research in the area of alternative medicine, nor does it offer meticulous documentation for all claims made by the various therapies. The goal of the text is to motivate you, the reader, to explore alternative approaches, increase your knowledge about factors that contribute to health and illness, and expand your professional practice appropriately.
It is possible to classify alternative practices in any number of ways. I have chosen to present more than 40 approaches categorized into seven units. In Unit One, I introduce the philosophical approaches to both Western biomedicine and alternative or complementary medicine. Concepts common to many approaches are defined and discussed such as energy, breath, spirituality, and healing. Unit Two presents a number of health care practices that have been systematized throughout the centuries and throughout the world. These typically include an entire set of values, attitudes, and beliefs that generate a philosophy of life, not simply a group of remedies. Unit Three is comprised of chapters relating to botanical healings used by 80 percent of the world's population. Chapter discussions cover herbs and nutritional supplements, aromatherapy, homeopathy, and naturopathy. Unit Four presents manual healing methods, some from ancient times and some developed in the latter half of the twentieth century. The chapters are chiropractic, massage, pressure point therapies, hand-mediated biofield therapies, and combined physical and biofield therapies. The chapters in Unit Five cover types of mind-body techniques for hea14. and include yoga, meditation, hypnotherapy and guided imagery, dreams, intuition, biofeedback, and movement-oriented therapies. Unit Six presents two spiritual approaches to therapeutic intervention: working with shamans and the use of faith and prayer. Unit Seven includes three chapters on miscellaneous practices: bioelectromagnetics, detoxifying therapies, and animal-assisted thelapy.
The appendix provides specific information on alternative therapies for common health problems. It is meant to provide education for the management of the types of problems that respond well to alternative therapies and lifestyle modification.
This book does not recommend treatments but rather describes alternative practices, their backgrounds and claims, preparation of practitioners, concepts, diagnostic methods, treatments, and evidence of research studies. This section is designed to help you, the nurse, expand your practice by providing you with specific information and suggestions. Integrated nursing practice is an important section of every chapter. Try This features throughout the chapters provide you with examples of how these practices can be integrated into your own life and also give you ideas for client education. A list of resources is also included in the chapters.
A feature new to the second edition is the Using Research to Heal feature, each of which focuses on a significant piece of published research relating to the chapter topic. These research boxes not only present current studies, but also are designed to further critical thinking and perhaps inspire readers to design studies to answer their own questions. For each study, the following questions are answered: What is this study about? How was the study done? What were the results of the study? What additional questions might I have? And how can I use this study? The research boxes were contributed by Dolores Huffman, PhD, RN, Associate Professor of Nursing, Purdue University Calumet.
The chapter on intuition (Chapter 19) is new to the second edition. I have included it because I believe that nursing practice is based on more than scientific understanding. Whether it is called skilled pattern recognition or intuition, experienced nurses' ability to combine this with linear deductive reasoning can positively affect the care of their clients. This chapter includes information on how individuals can use intuition for self-healing as well as information on medical intuitives.
Nursing is in a unique position to take a leadership role in integrating alternative healing methods into Western health care systems. We have historically used our hands, heart, and head in more natural and traditional healing interactions. As nurses, by virtue of our education and relationships with clients, we can help consumers assert their right to choose their own healing journey and the quality of their life anti death experiences.