Hi, guys, welcome to complementary alternative
medicines, otherwise known as CAM for short.
So this is an increasingly popular topic nowadays.
As you can imagine, when
you're ill and you go to the doctor,
you typically get different treatments or medications.
A lot of the times we have really
unwanted side effects from those.
So that's not fun.
So other alternatives that we're
going to look at is CAM therapy.
Now, before we dive in CAM therapy, let's take
a minute and talk about the difference between
that and Western or traditional medicine.
We call that allopathic medicine.
So, again, otherwise known as either
traditional medicine or Western medicine.
So this is the stuff you're going to see, like let's
say you go to the doctor because you're sick,
they may give you an antibiotic, for example.
That's a great example of Western medicine.
Now, this is typically good at treating the physical
illness, but really emotionally doesn't make us feel better
it doesn't help our spiritual
needs or look at the holistic person.
So that's the difference when CAM therapy comes in.
This is the type of health practices that
we use that's not used in Western medicine.
Now, this is much better at
looking at the holistic person,
meaning those emotional, spiritual
and even mental needs, for example.
Now, many patients, remember, turned
to complementary alternative medicine.
And one thing to note, as a nurse,
you're going to see your patients
maybe bring these type of
therapies in your facility.
So please be diligent.
Have a great conversation with your patient and make
sure you consider your patient's choices and options.
So let's take a look at different
categories of CAM therapy.
A really increasingly popular
one is biologically-based therapies.
This is going to look like the use
of herbal products, for example,
minerals, different types of dietary supplements.
A great example of this is maybe your
patient has removed gluten from their diet
or maybe they're using a full plant-based
diet, for example, for their health and wellness.
Another really unique type of CAM
therapy is what we call energy therapy.
They're going to manipulate energy fields using
light, sound, magnets and even personal touch.
And don't forget the use of manipulation.
This can be really helpful for our patients.
This is going to look like chiropractic
or massage therapy, for example.
I don't know about you, but a good massage
definitely helps to work out all those kinks
and those knots in your back and reduce stress.
And don't forget about moving the body.
Yoga's a great example here
because yoga is all over the place.
It's really accessible.
It also focuses on the holistic feeling of the person.
Some patients choose to adopt whole medical systems.
What this is going to look like is
maybe traditional Chinese medicine,
homeopathic medicine and acupuncture.
The whole focus here is to get away from
traditional medicine and go a holistic or CAM route.
Now, let's talk about just some easy nurse accessible
therapies that you could use either for even yourself
or your patients.
So one of these is relaxation therapy.
So this is easy to do in a patient's room.
We can dim the lights, have the patients
relax, try to remove any sort of excess stimuli
that the patient may have in their
room to help them decompress.
Next, meditation and breathing.
So here's something that we
totally underestimate as nurses, as
just having the patient deep breathe and exhale.
Take an inhale and deep breath.
A lot of times with my nursing students,
I will suggest this before a big test.
And lastly, a really neat type
of therapy is called imagery, guys.
Here's a great example of how
this can be used in medicine.
There's something called mirror box therapy.
Have you ever heard of it?
Well, they actually use this for
patients with phantom limb pain.
What I mean by this is some
diabetics, due to other complications,
they have to have an amputation of their leg.
As you can imagine, there's a
lot of pain associated with that.
So what they can do is put a
mirror where that amputated leg is.
It tricks the patient's mind to think
that that amputated leg is still there.
It actually reduces pain for patients, guys.
And this is completely noninvasive.
Now, let's take a look at some holistic
care pieces that we can implement
as interventions with our patients.
So don't forget about that relaxation
therapy guys, and also music therapy.
I don't know about you, but
sometimes just different types of music
definitely helps to relax and soothe the patient.
And we can use this easily with
our patients in any type of setting.
There's that therapeutic touch,
guys, and guided imagery as well.
And don't forget about the acupuncture.
Now, we talked about this a little bit
before, but we talked about ayurveda
and this is those alternative
medicines, such as those minerals,
herbs or special oils, for example.