Other Religions New Age / Metaphysical Holistic Healing Vs. Alternative Medicine Share Flipboard Email Print Iconica / Getty Images New Age / Metaphysical Holistic Healing Divination Chakra Balancing Reiki Crystal Therapy By Phylameana lila Desy Reiki Expert Phylameana lila Desy, the author of "The Everything Guide to Reiki," is a freelance writer, holistic healing consultant, intuitive counselor, and an energy medicine practitioner. our editorial process Phylameana lila Desy Updated May 08, 2019 Holistic healing means taking a holistic approach when seeking treatment for imbalances and choosing to live a more balanced lifestyle. What primarily distinguishes holistic healing apart from alternative medicine, complementary medicine, and integrative medicine is that physical health is not necessarily the main focus. Even so, it is often the experience of physical discomfort that will first prompt a person's pursuit of holistic healing. It is true that our pains and other physical discomforts demand our attention. This is where the saying sticking out like a sore thumb originated from. It is difficult to ignore the obvious when we are physically hurting. Common sense tells us that we should seek help to alleviate our discomforts. Holistic healing is not an alternative to conventional medical care. Sometimes going to a medical professional is the best solution to addressing a dis-ease. Physical illnesses are the symptoms of a greater imbalance that may or may not have a root cause in the physical. Holistic or "wholistic" healing addresses all parts of the individual, not just the physical aspect of a person where manifested illnesses are most apparent. Holistic healing is not intended to serve as a band-aid or a one time fix. It is an ongoing journey of discovery in search of more answers and ultimately; living better, being healthier, and striving for wholeness. Holistic Healing Goes Beyond the Mind-Body Connection: Holistic healing is really a lifestyle approach. The holistic approach goes far beyond the Mind-Body connection of finding and maintaining wellness. Overall wellness AND "wholeness" is highly valued. All parts of a person's life. Physical healing, mental health and wellness, emotional well-being, and spiritual beliefs and value) are considered. Taking a holistic approach involves seeking the tools that will help us attract our desires and find personal power. A person who embraces the desire to find wholeness within his own being soon learns the importance of tending to relationships, caring for the planet and our environments, having compassion for humankind in general, and accepting and tolerating differences among a diverse population of people. Role of the Holistic Healer: The holistic healer recognizes that our discomforts or pains are merely symptoms of an imbalance. The imbalance could be a physical issue, the result of abusing the physical body through an unhealthy diet, lack of exercise, or too little sleep. Or, the imbalance may be the result of mental, emotional, or spiritual needs not being met. No aspect (mind, body, spirit, or emotions) of a person is overlooked when a holistic treatment is sought. The holistic healer looks at the "whole person" in order to make his or her complete evaluation and uses all information gathered from suggested treatments to the client are offered. Keep in mind, not all holistic healers are equal, each has his or her own specialty or expertise to offer. It will benefit you to shop around for a good fit. Choosing to go to a holistic healer is no different from choosing a medical professional. You decide. Types of Holistic Healing Therapies and Treatments: The types of holistic therapies available are extensive and diverse: AromatherapyAyurveda medicineNatural dietExerciseSpiritual counselingVibrational medicineHomeopathyAcupunctureNaturopathic medicineBodyworkEnergy-based therapiesPrayerful intentionChinese medicine Definition of Alternative Medicine Alternative Medicine is a term used when therapies are presented as an option to conventional or Western medical treatments. Definition of Complementary Medicine Complementary Medicine is a term used when therapies are being used in conjunction with conventional or Western medical treatments. Definition of Integrative Medicine Integrative Medicine was the new "buzz" term first used primarily by mainstreamers in the 1990s. This was a time when more medical professionals were opening their eyes to the Mind-Body connection. Alternative therapies were no longer automatically being judged as quackery or far-afield from acceptable. Some therapies were being integrated into the mainstream. Massage therapy, acupuncture, meditation and visualization, and chiropractic medicine were among the first therapies to be integrated into established medical care programs. Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis or treatment by a licensed physician. You should seek prompt medical care for any health issues and consult your doctor before using alternative medicine or making a change to your regimen.