Integrating Traditional Medicine with Complementary and Alternative Treatments
Once again, the Tarnow Center for Self-Management leads the way as an early adopter of “Integrated Self-Management.” In a recent blog post , we announced our expanded integration of traditional psychiatry practices with Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) types of treatment.
Just a month later, the Psychiatric News publication came out with an alert proclaiming “Integrated Self-Management Interventions Appear Effective.” Sound familiar? So we are now validated by the powers at be and the hard research data collected on this breakthrough concept to bring the best solutions and improved outcome to your mental health care.
So, what does this all mean in the treatment of Psychiatric Disorders? It means integrating other treatments rather than just relying on the traditional medicines. It also means understanding the uniqueness of each patient from a Biopsychosocial perspective and treating each component, and using the brain’s natural healing process of brain plasticity to help patients overcome their symptoms. These CAM treatments can be divided into the following five categories:
- Vitamins and herbals-things people take.
- Treatments that stimulate or change the brain-things people do. For example, using scientifically proven computer programs, such as CogMed and Interactive Metronome, to improve brain functioning and the underlying causes of ADHD. Research has shown that CogMed improves working memory; while Interactive Metronome improves processing speed, coordination, and timing.
- Assessments of physical brain functioning and using them to direct interventions. For example, doing QEEGs to understand the different types of ADHD, the brain functioning underlying it, and how best to intervene. QEEG measurements can now be analyzed by computers and compared to hundreds of thousands of other QEEGs to analyze, which medications or herbs will work best with which brain patterns and patients. In addition, Neurotherapy is more effective when the QEEGs are analyzed by a Board Certified Electroencephalographer, who specifically defines the parameters to intervene.
- Treatment of the consequences and sequelae of ADHD, such as using Melatonin, Tryptophan, and/or Valerian Root for the common problem in ADHD of insomnia.
- Healthy living techniques to decrease the symptoms and secondary problems of Psychiatric Disorders, such as addiction, poor health status, increased emergency room visits, and increased healthcare costs. Examples of these would be Meditation, Tai Chi, Yoga, and Aerobic exercise.
The truth is, we have been doing this for many years as we pioneered the use of nutritional supplements, computer programs, QEEGs, genetic testing, etc. in conjunction with our more conventional interventions. And our research to date suggests similar findings of effectiveness. We hope you will take full advantage of our Integrative Psychiatry services in the coming months. Please contact us or visit our website (www.tarnowcenter.com) for more information on how we can help optimize your treatment plan.