According to a report in today's Herald Sun, we are turning their backs on traditional medicine in favour of
new-age treatments, such as acupuncture, naturopathy, traditional Chinese
medicine herbalism, aromatherapy, iridologyt reflexology and
massage. According to the report, 40 per cent of all medical
consultations in Australia are for alternative therapies, and it is predicted
alternative therapies will overtake conventional medicine within 10 years.
These statistics don't really surprise me, and the trend away from traditional G.P's is a result of the state of the Health Care system in Australia. It is a "sick-care" system not a "health-care" system.
Despite what the Australian Medical Association and well-meaning doctor's might have us believe, they aren't interested in our overall health and well-being, they are only interested in us if we are sick, can be diagnosed within 15 minutes or less and there is a pill that will makes us better... They’ll fix us when we are broken, but don'r really "care" about our overall and general "health." It’s not all their fault though, our whole healthcare system is just designed (very badly) like that, and urgently needs fixing; or as Tom put it once:
“Shift focus—dramatically—from dosing, cutting and fixing-after-the-fact to Prevention, Wellness and Healing.”
The truth is that I have a great relationship with my G.P., in fact I have been seeing him for nearly 15 years. When I am sick, he is great. But I had long been suffering bad headaches; I had a headache more often than I didn't, not fun. You name it my doctor tried it (in 15minute intervals of course!), but was really only interested in fixing the symptoms after the fact, rather than looking and fixing (= healing, curing) the cause, which we thought was linked to some muscles in my back.
So I took myself off to see a Shiatsu Therapist, who was interested in healing my back, not just curing my headaches. He clearly informed me of his diagnosis and on each visit kept me up to date with how the, treatment, healing, and my “wellness” was progressing.. To cut a long story short, Shiastu Therapist visits= 8, headaches in the last 4 months, almost zero. And with regular exercises prescribed by the Shiatsu "guru" I can now maintain my headache free lifestyle.
And I am obviously not alone, and I can see why there is a trend on towards therapies that were once reserved for hippies in tie-dyed shirts. It is another example of a niche product (the natural therapy market) catering to a disgruntled market unsatisfied with the status-quo.
(Hint: Non traditional therapists like to talk (have a conversation!) about you, a doctor wants to talk about your symptoms....what would you prefer?)