Gettinga definitive description of traditional and nontraditional healthcare practices is rather intricate. This is because some describenontraditional health care practices as medical procedures thatoriginate from scientifically proven evidence and poses a healingeffect. On the other hand, traditional practices depend on theskills, knowledge as well as practices that are based on beliefs,experiences and theories indigenous to various cultures. The theoriescan be inexplicable but are generally used for diagnosis andtreatment as well as prevention of diseases. In another context,traditional practices are viewed as the commonly used medicalprocedures or in other words “western medicine”. In thisperspective, nontraditional medical practices include mind-bodymedicine, Chinese medicine, osteopathy and naturopathic medicineamong others. All these health care practices whether scientificallyproven or not are viewed differently by cultures. The practices areused to ensure wellness as well as prevention of people in thevarious cultures. The number of people preferring naturalistic meansof attaining health are continuously growing [ CITATION Wor00 l 1033 ].
Thecommon health care practices include Chinese medicine, Haitian’svoodoo, Christian faith healing, diet based therapy, naturopathy andhomeopathy among others. Though most are not scientifically proven,people tend to have faith in them since they are more for preventionrather than cure. In accordance to voodoo, practitioners utilize folkmedicine to heal various ailments from supernatural sickness tonatural ones. Voodoo is practiced alongside Christian faith andinclude incantations, conversing with the spirits, prayers anddancing. Diagnosis is by means of trances, shells and cards.Generally, Haitians make health care decisions based on voodoo [ CITATION Jes101 l 1033 ].
TheChinese medicine is another growing trend. People from differentcultures have come to embrace the Chinese medicine in variousaspects. The Chinese medicine is a complex system incorporatingherbal medicine, acupuncture, remedial massage, breathing therapy,lifestyle and diet advice as well as exercise. Theoretical frameworksencompassed within the culture is used to assess, diagnose and treatindividuals. The frameworks are utilized to determine the symptomsand what has made the body to be dysfunctional. The system alsointegrates western means such as infection control mechanisms as wellas known pharmaceuticals and therapeutic substances. In countriessuch as Australia, herbal medicine and acupuncture are the commonlyused Chinese health care practices [ CITATION Reb10 l 1033 ].
TheAfrican culture also has a unique way of appreciating health caresystems. Though the cultures differ across the African countries,herbal medicine is common across most of them. Diagnosis can bemodern systems in health care facilities, but medication followsculturally developed mechanisms. For instance a patient sufferingfrom high blood pressure can be diagnosed in modern health carefacilities, but the healing process utilizes herbal medicine.
Incurrent health care facilities, integration of both traditional andnontraditional mechanisms of prevention, diagnosis and treatment ofdiseases is becoming a trend. Prevention in most cases involvesregular exercise, precautions on dietary terms among others. Someailments are easier to prevent than to cure. The different cultureshave diverse means of ensuring prevention of certain diseases but allencourage exercise and diet as the most important. Some culturesbelieve diseases are mental to a certain extent. Therefore,relaxation of mind through various therapies like Chinese yoga cancure such ailments [ CITATION Reb10 l 1033 ].
However,some ailments require modernized means of diagnosis and cure. Itposes a great health risk whenever culture interferes with normaltreatment. For instance, Haitians tend to believe HIV/AIDS andTuberculosis are supernatural diseases hence require spiritualinterventions to cure them. The diseases are likened to poverty. Onthe hand, Obesity is a symbol of wealth. This kinds of culturalbeliefs pose great health risks and are detrimental to the lifestylesof many individuals. Therefore, instead of seeking for treatment,patients opt to consult the spirits [ CITATION Joe121 l 1033 ].
Withinmy area, there exists a combination of traditional and nontraditionalhealth care mechanisms which are mostly interweaved so as to suit allfacets. One common Chinese technique is the yoga. Yoga as deemed bythe Chinese can be used for both preventive and curative measures. Ithelps relax the mind and is also a form of exercise. Diet basedtherapy is also common. With the growing number of processed foods,obesity among individuals has become common. However, diet basedtherapies tend to educate people on how to balance their diets.
Thesehealth care options tend to be more of preventive. In that respect,many people have acknowledged the need to stay healthy and avoidself-inflicted diseases. By watching over their diets and exercisingregularly, diseases can be avoided. Natural means of treatment tendto be less painful. Apart from offering curative advantages, theyalso help in relaxation which is a vital thing. Since religion is animportant aspect within the society, ailing individuals also useChristian faith healing. Generally, natural ways of treatment arequite peaceful hence the growing number of people appreciating thesame. Treatments like the Chinese ones are based on individualizedformulas that are meant for each patient. Individualizing medicalcare is somehow preferred by most people since care is givendepending on the person’s preferences.
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Joel. K., &. P. (2012). HIV/AIDS, STIs, TB, and Haitians beliefs and practices. HIV/AIDS, STIs, TB, and Haitians beliefs and practices, 1-36.
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World Health Organization. (2000). General Guidelines for Methodologies on Research and Evaluation of Traditional Medicine. General Guidelines for Methodologies on Research and Evaluation of Traditional Medicine, 1-80.