Holistic/Alternative Medicine

By definition, holistic is characterized by comprehension of the parts of something as intimately interconnected and explicable only by reference to the whole. Holistic medicine is also know as alternative medicine.

So how does this apply to medicine and mental health? To simplify things, holistic medicine is the idea that there are alternative ways to treat disorders and aliments, rather than the traditional means. Examples used in mental health include, meditation, mindfulness, hypnotherapy/hypnosis, reiki/energy work and acupuncture. Using these forms of treatment is well suited for those seeking something different than traditional treatments. They also provide a more natural experience for the patient.

 

 

Meditation

 

By definition, meditation is to think deeply or focus one’s mind for a period of time, in silence or with the aid of chanting, for religious or spiritual purposes or as a method of relaxation. There are three main types of meditation: Focused Attention, Mindfulness and Effortless Transcending.

We offer two different meditation groups at Avenues, and are hoping to add more. You can check out the groups and more about meditation here.

 

 

Mindfulness

 

Mindfulness involves purposefully paying attention to the present moment. This allows us to gain greater awareness of ourselves and the world around us. Also, mindfulness is helpful in cultivating a nonjudgmental attitude towards oneself and one’s emotions. The benefits of incorporating this practice into one’s life include reduced stress, increased physical activity and self-esteem, and greater self-acceptance. Participants or practitioners who use Mindfulness practice various activities including meditation, deep breathing, mindful eating and walking, and body exercises, like yoga. Research has shown it to be effective in treating a variety of problems from depression and anxiety to chronic pain.

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Hypnotherapy/Hypnosis 

 

Hypnotherapy involves guided relaxation and intense concentration. Hypnotherapy utilizes the heightened awareness of the hypnotic state to help you explore yourself more deeply in therapy. Your Clinician will be your guide to help you visualize yourself in a state of peacefulness and relaxation, in order to achieve your goals more quickly and deeply. During hypnotherapy, you remain in control. It is not possible for anyone to force you to do anything against your will, even under hypnosis. You will be tuned in to the work at hand, and so may not pay attention to your surroundings, but you will always be in charge of your own actions, behaviors and statements.

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Reiki/Energy Work

 

Reiki (ˈrākē), sometimes known as energy healing, is a technique based on the principle that the therapist can channel energy into the patient by means of touch, to activate the natural healing processes of the patient’s body and restore physical and emotional well-being. It is known to reduce stress and promote mental healing. People can be skeptical of it since it is a form of holistic medicine, or alternative medicine, but it is a technique that has been used since 1922 in Japan by Buddhist Mikao Usui. Since then, it has been adapted to fit various cultures around the world.

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Acupuncture

 

Acupuncture has been around for quite some time. It is used for treating pain such as headaches, back pain, asthma, menstrual cramps and joint pain. There is some skepticism around acupuncture, however, western medicine is now seeing it as a more accepted form of alternative medicine.

Avenues does not currently offer acupuncture, but hopes to soon. Stay alert to changes of the status of availability.

Click here to find out more.