Complementary and Alternative Medicine
- Define complementary and alternative medicine.
- Choose one example of complementary and alternative medicine. Describe the nurse practitioner’s role in utilizing your chosen complementary and alternative medicine.
- Support your answer with evidence-based research.
Complementary and alternative medicine
This group of diverse medical and healthcare systems, practices, and products is not presently considered part of conventional medicine. CAM is the term for a wide range of products and practices not part of standard medical care. CAM includes everything from acupuncture and aromatherapy to dietary supplements and yoga (Teow et al., 2020). There is growing evidence that some CAM therapies can help manage certain conditions, including cancer-related side effects and symptoms. However, we still need to learn more about many CAM therapies, and some CAM therapies may not be safe.
Nurse Practitioner Roles in one form of CAM
Mind-body therapies are a type of CAM that combines mental focus, breathing, and body movements to help relax the body and mind. Some examples of mind-body therapies include meditation, biofeedback, hypnosis, yoga, and tai chi (Herbert & Esparham, 2018). Nurse practitioners can counsel patients on the benefits of mind-body therapy and how to use it effectively. They can explain how mind-body therapy can help patients relax and cope with stress, pain, and other health problems. They can also teach patients meditation, biofeedback, and hypnosis techniques. The nurse practitioner’s role in utilizing mind-body therapies is to educate and support patients interested in using these therapies (Blake-Beckford, 2022).
The nurse practitioner should be familiar with the most common mind-body therapies and be able to provide information about the potential benefits and risks of each treatment. In addition, the nurse practitioner should guide patients in selecting a reputable practitioner and integrating mind-body therapies into their overall treatment plan. Nurse practitioners can guide patients through yoga and tai chi exercises. These exercises can help patients relax and cope with stress, pain, and other health problems (Park et al., 2020). Nurse practitioners can further monitor patients’ progress and adjust treatments as needed. They can also support and encourage patients as they learn to use mind-body therapy techniques.
Blake-Beckford, P. D. (2022). A Qualitative Study on Nurse Facilitators of Mind-Body Skills Groups.
Herbert, A., & Esparham, A. (2018). Mind-body therapy for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Children, 4(5), 31. https://doi.org/10.3390/children4050031
Park, J., Krause-Parello, C. A., & Barnes, C. M. (2020). A narrative review of movement-based mind-body interventions. Holistic Nursing Practice, 34(1), 3–23. https://doi.org/10.1097/hnp.0000000000000360
Teow, Y. E., Ng, S. C., Azmi, A. H., Hamzah, M. R., Kaur, J., Mathiarasu, D. S., Mogan, D., Ong, S. C., Subramaniam, Y. P., Sweneson, T., Tan, J. Y., Tee, L. W., Mathialagan, A. G., Tee, H. Y., & Thomas, W. (2020). A cross-sectional evaluation of complementary and alternative medicine use in a non-urban Malaysian population. Journal of Community Health, 46(3), 515–521. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10900-020-00891-z