Even though natural remedies have grown in popularity in the past few years, there is still resistance to natural remedies and natural medicine in mainstream society. I have had people jokingly refer to it as voodoo or witchcraft. That’s funny but it’s also very telling. People have been taught to think that doctors, nurses and anyone with a degree knows better than they do. That’s fine as far as it goes, but it’s not always true. You know your body better than anyone else. You know when something is not right. Doctors need to learn to pay attention and listen to what a patient is telling them, instead of ignoring symptoms that don’t fit into their diagnosis or not asking the patient questions designed to isolate certain issues. Patients need to learn to ask questions and to not be afraid to speak up or disagree. If the doctor does not listen, find another one.
Doctors are not gods. They are providing you a service, just like anybody else and like everybody else, some doctors are better at their job than others. A medical degree is not a certification of proficiency of skill, it is a certification of completing a course of training. The best doctors aren’t the only ones who graduate. Every one of them who was able to keep from flunking out graduates. We should all keep this in mind when choosing and dealing with our health care professionals and try to resist the mindset that doctors are infallible all-knowing supernatural beings. I have nothing against doctors; we often need them and there are some problems that only a doctor can help you with but remember that doctors are just people like everybody else.
It is because of this type of thinking that there is such a resistance to so-called “alternative” medicines and therapies. People have been conditioned to believe that ‘health’ comes out of a bottle given to you by a doctor. Anything else is either deemed scary voodoo or in the same league as quack cure-alls that don’t really work.
I was speaking recently with an individual who has an autistic son. She seemed to take offense at something I’d said on Facebook regarding using lavender essential oil as part of a holistic therapy for hyperactivity and aggression in children with autism and other disorders. I myself have an autistic son and my nieces and nephews all have hyperactivity, overactivity and aggression problems. Lavender works very well for them, as does chamomile and a few other things. This person commented, stating that natural things would not work for her child and that he needed medication so that his mind could work in a way that it was not able to on it’s own. The implication was that while natural therapies might be great for some people, they would not be potent or powerful enough for her child. I asked her how she knew that and what she’d tried besides medication. She declined to answer and left the conversation without saying another word.
There is too much of this “magic pill” thinking and too much distrust of anything that is not a magic pill. Herbal and natural medicines have been dubbed “alternative” medicine when the truth is that synthetic medicines are the true alternative.