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May 16, 2004

Alternative Medicine In Rehab

Oftentimes I blog about the use of massage in hospitals where the staff reaps the benefit and the massage is given on a volunteer basis. This Chicago area hospital is combining alternative modalities in its rehabilitation center.

The hospital has been on the leading edge of integrative medicine for a decade, combining massage, meditation and acupuncture with physical rehabilitation to speed up recovery.

The hospital opened a branch in Oak Brook two years ago that gives healthy people a chance to try out some of the activities used in the rehabilitation hospital. Classes are offered in aromatherapy, tai chi, massage, yoga, Pilates and meditation.

The relaxation caused by the meditation also leads to deeper sleep, which helps the body heal faster. Functions such as bladder control, speech and muscle movement also improved.

Weil says a pattern of eight breathing exercises can lead to increased energy, lower blood pressure, improved circulation and reduced anxiety.

"I think that this integrative medicine movement is poised to become mainstream," Weil said. "The only obstacle is reimbursement."

Posted by linda at May 16, 2004 11:17 AM

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