What is Holistic Medicine
Holistic medicine is a form of healing that considers that whole person – body, mind, spirit and emotions – in the quest for optimal health and wellness. Holistic medicine means consideration of the complete person, physically, psychologically, socially, and spiritually, in the management and prevention of disease. It is underpinned by the concept that there is a link between our physical health and our more general 'well-being'. In an holistic approach to medicine, there is the belief that our well-being relies not just on what is going on in our body physically in terms of illness or disease, but also on the close inter-relation of this with our psychological, emotional, social, spiritual and environmental state. These different states can be equally important. They should be managed together so that a person is treated as a whole.
It is a common misconception that holistic medicine is viewed as 'alternative' or 'complementary' medicine. It is true that holistic medicine allows for a wider range of treatment approaches to be used together and encourages open-mindedness for these different approaches. Some of these approaches may include the use of complementary and alternative medicine but holistic medicine does not dismiss conventional medicine. It uses conventional medicine as part of the treatment approach. Nutrition, exercise, and meditation are just a few other treatments that may be used together with conventional medicine as part of an holistic approach.
Clinical holistic medicine actually dates as far back as Hippocrates, the father of modern and ancient medicine who is noted as saying:
"It is more important to know what sort of person has a disease than to know what sort of a disease a person has."
That's another way of saying that it's important to understand the patient and then you'll understand the disease.