Meanwhile, some modern practices have their roots in traditional belief systems. ‘Mindfulness’ is a popular treatment for depression and anxiety, but it is actually a Westernised version of meditation which has roots in ancient Buddhism. There is evidence to support mindfulness as a treatment for depression. Dr Gordon gives the example of three teenagers presenting with depression and asthma. One might respond better to joining a running group, one may continue to need medication, and one may benefit from family therapy.
Treatment aims to be evidence-based with a scientific evaluation of efficacy, dose and toxicity. Valid clinical trials are very important and law strictly regulates it. Before then, therapies such as homeopathy, acupuncture, osteopathy and herbal medicine had dedicated adherents but were considered distinctly suspect and unconventional.
The popularity of integrative medicine need not be cause for concern, providing it stays within its remit and remains a complementary treatment. Sham … Read More