Also referred to as Complementary and Alternative Therapies (CAM) by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Integrative Medicine approaches provide a holistic component to wellness, as well as promote clients' active participation in their own healing.
Integrative Medicine itself is a board-certified specialization of allopathic (general Western) medicine. It has changed the face of clinical care by recognizing the importance of coordinating and incorporating a variety of traditional and contemporary approaches to the healing processs.
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a division of NIH, describes CAM as a group of diverse medical and healthcare systems, practices and products that are used in combination with conventional medicine to promote wellness and reduce symptoms associated with illness and disease. On a more global level, the World Health Organization (WHO) refers to both traditional medicine and indigenous medicine when discussing CAM, recognizing and distinguishing cultural influence and acceptance within national healthcare systems.
In essence, the common goal of CAM therapies is to supplement and support a balanced lifestyle, taking the needs of the individual -- as an individual - into account. Integrative Medicine therapies stimulate healing and acceptance of the physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual challenges resulting from changes in one's health, condition or life circumstances, which include:
• maintaining general wellness
• perinatal care
• stress, anxiety & depression
• sleep-regulated challenges
• appetite issues
• modulating energy & activity level
• chronic pain & discomfort
• pre- and post-operative recovery & adjustment
• changes in marital status or family constellation
• job and school transitions
• loss, grief & bereavement
• end-of-life care
CAM approaches are easily adaptable for infants, children, adults, the elderly, the infirm, and those receiving palliative or hospice care -- as well as with our animal companions.
A healthy IM team focuses on healing as a holistic effort among members whose primary, best and solitary interest is in supporting individuals in attaining their most comfortable and whole selves. In doing so, we open ourselves to whatever combination of services accomplishes this end, thus allowing the best odds of achieving the true definition of wholeness that MacKay-Greer so succinctly suggests.
To learn more about Integrative Energy Therapies and their role in CAM, just click to the next page. But, before you do, please read the following disclaimer...
It is important for you to understand that my scope of practice as an Integrative Medicine Practitioner is in no way suggestive or indicative of training as a physician. I am NOT a medical doctor of any Western or Eastern tradition.
Nor do I play one on TV.
As such, I do NOT diagnose medical or psychological conditions, nor do I provide pharmaceutical, naturopathic, homeopathic, acupuncture, accupressure, aromatherapy or nutritional/dietary guidance or supplies.
I treat clients -- not conditions.
I am also NOT a massage therapist, nor do I provide any pressure-based therapies or manipulation of soft tissue or joints.
That being said, I have worked with some wonderful professionals in each of these fields, and am comfortable providing referrals upon request, as long as you understand that such referrals are based upon my own personal experiences and choice to receive services from these folks -- NOT as an endorsement for services or for compensatory purposes.
If you'd like to read more regarding the Code of Ethics, Practice Guidelines, and Standards of Practice of the Natural Healing Alliance -- the current state organization coordinating cooperative oversight within the Light-Touch and Energy Therapy profession -- just click on the links as noted.
Glad I got that off my chest. Moving on...
© Hayley Kamis, MA, RM/T, IARP, CCC-SLP