The Need for Complementary Care

Are doctors or their patients curious about complementary care?  The answer is yes. 

For a long time now there has been a storm of confusion over alternative and complementary care for perinatal mood changes.  Are Omega-3s safe?  Do vitamins give me “expensive urine”?  Is there anything I can do if my meds don’t work?  Professionals and consumers alike have questions- a lot of questions!

A recent study by a firm in my own backyard confirms that providers are leaning hard on the idea of opening their practices to include CAM, complementary and alternative medicine. 

How do some providers decide what to offer?  Here are their responses:


  • “I draw the line on anything that isn’t proven scientifically. Unacceptable are those treatments that only target the practice’s bottom line.”
  • “Yes, only those that have stood up to the test of controlled studies are accepted.”
  • “No. It seems to me to be driven almost entirely by personal preferences / exposure.”
  • “Doctors are not properly trained in the use of alternative medicine and therefore are very reluctant to use them in their practice.”
  • “I believe that most physicians are fixed in their mind set about ‘scientific medicine’ and ‘alternative medicine,” and it is difficult to change their mind set.”
  • “Probably not. From my experience, physicians who discount CAM tend to lump all CAM modalities together regardless of their actual credibility (or lack thereof) and toss out proven methods such as acupuncture regardless of the results.”

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So, the problem seems to be that consumers WANT alternative care and providers WANT TO PROVIDE IT, but it has to be on their own terms.  It must be proven advice, they must be familiar with its use, and they have to believe in its effectiveness.

This blog will focus on providing current thinking on the treatment of perinatal mood disorders using clinical nutrition.  It’s a well-documented field with a great amount of promise, and it is a complementary approach, not an alternative one.  That means after checking with their doctor, women can choose to incorporate some of the approaches outlined in this blog into an existing medication program.  Or, for women who do not care to use medication, these options can serve to reduce or eliminate mood reactions by themselves.  Many mothers have experienced a great deal of relief by supplementing their nutrition.

Navigating the very large field of Alternative Medicine will be a secondary focus.  This includes areas like ayurvedic medicine, traditional Chinese medicine, hypnotherapy, chiropractic, aromatherapy, energy healing, acupuncture; etc.   


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