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Treatments at a Glance
Here are some of the conditions doctors can treat using a combination of complementary and alternative therapies:
● Anxiety, depression and stress
● Cancer support
● Chronic fatigue
● Chronic pain (back, neck, hip, shoulder)
● Circulatory problems
● Digestive problems
● Headaches (including migraines)
● Mobility problems
● Respiratory problems
● Wellness – smoking cessation,
Millions of Americans are turning to acupuncture, massage and nutritional supplements for ailments like anxiety, back pain and fatigue. About 38 percent of adults use some type of alternative medicine as part of their personal wellness plan. But are these treatments really efective?
“These therapies may be ‘alternative’ in the United States, but they’re common in other countries,” says Michael Seidman, M.D., director of the Henry Ford Health System Center for Integrated Medicine. “It’s a more holistic approach involving mind, body and spirit. These treatments are also less invasive and promote wellness. I encourage people to be open-minded about alternative medicine. Thousands of studies have shown that these therapies work. They’re not hogwash.”
Dr. Seidman says acupuncture can help manage pain when standard treatments aren’t efective.
“Many acupuncture patients no longer need to take pain medication,” Dr. Seidman says. “We also use acupuncture and hypnotherapy to help patients quit smoking.”
Herbal supplements like Echinacea may help boost the immune system, and garlic may help prevent heart disease and cancer. Ginkgo biloba extract may enhance memory. But it’s not clear if nutritional supplements help slow the aging process.
“Having a healthy diet is one of the best ways to extend our lifespan,” Dr. Seidman says. “Many medical problems are caused by poor lifestyle choices. We are the CEOs of our own bodies. We have to do everything we can to live as healthy as possible.”
For more information, visit the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine website at www. nccam.nih.gov . Always check with your doctor if you’re considering an alternative therapy or herbal supplement because these may interfere with the efectiveness of
prescription medicine. Your doctor may be able to answer your questions or refer you to an alternative medicine specialist. Remember, alternative medicine may not be a covered beneft.
Mind and Body Medicine
Michael Seidman, M.D.
LiveWell: Health LiveWell: Advice
Besides saving money, time banks are a great way to connect with people in your community and make new friend
When Kim Hodge of Lathrup Village was preparing for her backyard wedding last summer, she didn’t have time to pull weeds from her fower beds. So she used some of her time bank hours to have neighbors do the job, saving time and hundreds of dollars. In fact, Hodge didn’t spend any money to make her yard look gorgeous.
What is a Time Bank?
A time bank is a “pay-it-forward” type of community service using hours as currency instead of cash. For every hour you spend performing a service for a community member, you earn an hour. Then you can spend that hour and have someone do a service for you. It’s that simple.
“Time banks are a wonderful concept,” says Hodge, who founded the Lathrup Village time bank fve years ago. She earns hours by ofering her skills as a political campaign organizer. “No dollars are exchanged. You just trade hours.”
Time banks follow the concept that everyone has a skill to ofer, whether you’re a teenager or a senior citizen. You might mow a lawn, knit a sweater, paint a garage or create a business plan. There is no limit on the types of services ofered or requested. Time bank hours are also tax exempt.
“The teen who cooks a meal has an hour equal to the one earned by an attorney who ofers legal advice,” Hodge says. “Members record their hours, list their skills and place requests for services online.”
Time Banks: Paying It Forward
Besides saving money, time banks are a great way to connect with people in your community and make new friends.
“These days, we don’t seem to know our neighbors as well as we once did,” Hodge says. “Time banks give members the opportunity to form relationships. It’s a diferent way of living that’s not based on the almighty dollar. It’s about giving and receiving and living in a meaningful, heartfelt way.”
Where can I fnd a Time Bank?
Most time banks have between 40 and 60 members. Membership fees range from $25 to $50. To learn more about time banks or to fnd one near you, visit the Michigan Alliance of Time Banks website at www.mitimebanks.org .
2012 LIVEWELL MID-LIFE ISSUE 3 -- PROOF #4 -- 10/25/12 v5