REVIEW – September 2018

Scientific view on alternative medicine

Authors: Kadi Lubi, Marko Uibu, Katre Koppel

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Abstract

Increasing health awareness and courage to make health-related decisions regarding one’s health is supported by individually taken responsibility. The increase of patients’ self-confidence in seeking for solutions to health problems has encouraged increasingly more people to accept the methods, products and services of alternative and complementary medicine. Based on specialist literature, the current article gives an overview of some socio-cultural factors that support the usage of alternative medicine. The main reasons that motivate people to search for alternative solutions are related to cultural traditions (e.g. usage of herbal medicines), increase of medical pluralism, meeting expectations of neoliberalism (which assumes a focus on individual responsibility), and changes in the habits of media consumption. In order to initiate public discussion, involvement of all parties is needed.