As I stipulated yesterday, I am hesitant to believe in all complementary health approaches for elders. I do understand that many of the approaches work just fine with younger people, but there are too many outside concerns that could complicate some of the procedures of holistic approaches; easy bruising (from certain medications), bone breakage (lack of minerals in bones), diseases that cause complications.
The National Institute of Health, the NIH, was as curious as I am, but they have the wherewithal to prepare a complete comparison between complementary vs. alternative approaches. Many nonmedical personnel will refer to holistic approaches as complementary and alternative, although they are actually different in nature as in concept.
- “Complementary” refers to use of a non-mainstream approach together with conventional medicine.
- “Alternative” refers to use of a non-mainstream approach in place of conventional medicine.
If a doctor offers a true “alternative” medical approach, they are rare. It is much more typical to use the “complementary” approach – holistic in combination with conventional methods.
One disease that caregivers may witness as having being treated in a complementary fashion is cancer. Depending on the type of cancer, many times, caregivers themselves will offer massages to their clients. Hospice workers are adept at this type of additional treatment – even while administering medications that will take away their pain.
If acupuncture is used to take away pain from say arthritis, this may or may not be efficient. As I stated yesterday, my client was cured for a slight bit of time and then the pain was even greater!
Sometimes symptoms and side effects are lessoned; sometimes not! As a caregiver, you will have to determine whether or not you see improvement or if your client is just spending additional funds needlessly. Telling them kindly the latter helps to prove that you believe that With Age Comes Respect.