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Information on Optimal Health & Integrative Therapies
Now, more than ever, Americans are actively seeking ways to live longer and healthier lives. In support of this, the Western medical community has opened itself up to accepting the need to practice integrative medicine. Many different integrative therapies such as chiropractic, acupuncture, massage therapy, naturopathy, nutrition, and herbal remedies, are now being used in conjunction with other therapies to treat physical and mental/emotional health.
In addition to accepting therapies that up until more recently have been referred to as “alternative,” mainstream Americans are becoming increasingly aware of the need to take control of their own health and well-being if they want to have optimal health. They are doing this through exercise and through improving their diets and nutritional intake. Many people go to mental health counseling. It is no longer unusual for the “typical” American to seek out holistic and integrative therapies. People who may be at higher risk for cancers and other devastating hereditary diseases are seeking out genetic counselors to help them make decisions about preventative care, as well as counselors such as nutritionists, who can recommend foods that are high in antioxidants and low on ingredients that are not healthy for them them.
Western medicine is currently facing challenges that is forcing itself to re-examine how healthcare is practiced in the United States. The past few centuries have led to many, many amazing breakthroughs in medicine based on careful and focused study. A backlash to being able to do this is that much of modern medicine is based on compartmentalized treatment of a particular ailment
Doctor of Chiropractic
One of the more popular of the many different integrative medicines available to Americans is, chiropractic. A common concern many people have when they are unfamiliar with chiropractic therapy and doctors of chiropractic, is whether or not chiropractors have actually gone to legitimate schools and whether they have undergone sufficient training.
To earn doctor of chiropractic (DO) degree in the United States, candidates need to graduate from graduate-level health colleges. A DO is a doctor but they are not a medical doctor (MD). They typically complete the same amount of schooling or more than an MD does. DO degrees typically take an additional four years to complete in addition to the DO candidate’s (prior) four year undergraduate degree. Chiropractic programs usually provide a minimum of 4,200 instructional hours in course credits. Chiropractic students often have pre-med undergraduate degrees and/or have taken numerous courses in science, including but not limited to biology, biochemistry, physics, psychology, and other classes in the behavioral sciences.
After their formal education is successfully completed, an aspiring doctor of chiropractic needs to sit for their state licensing board in order to obtain licensure and certification from the board. It is very common for chiropractors to get additional training and certification in a wide range of specialties. Acupuncture, herbal medicine, homeopathy, nutrition, and sports medicine, name just a few of the many specialties that chiropractors often seek additional education and degrees in.