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How do you talk to people who are into alternative medicine??!

(164 Posts)
Pruni Thu 18-Aug-05 22:19:32

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nooka Thu 18-Aug-05 22:51:47

I don't think it's just about making money!
Although I agree on the evidenced based approach. Some people are out and out frauds, some believe their own hype, and some genuinely have something to offer. Some alternative approaches are very difficult to assess for effectiveness - oh and lots of traditional medicine is not evidence based at all.

Agree about the what to say though!

Pruni Thu 18-Aug-05 22:56:05

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lockets Thu 18-Aug-05 23:36:53

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eemie Thu 18-Aug-05 23:38:20

What's wrong with snorting derisively? Seems completely appropriate to me.

jasper Thu 18-Aug-05 23:48:42

I snort internally, and smile sweetly

lockets Fri 19-Aug-05 00:02:28

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fqueenzebra Fri 19-Aug-05 00:06:11

Why not treat it like any other unwelcome advice. Say "hmmmmm...", change the subject and don't tell them again about your problems.

Anyway, they are only trying to be helpful. £35 isn't that much to pay if it works for you, even if the only scientific explanation is placebo effect.

Caribbeanqueen Fri 19-Aug-05 00:09:34

People are only trying to be helpful, or to offer advice based on what may have been succesful experiences for them. For many people, alternative medicine has been a godsend when conventional medicine has failed.

Some of it may be more dubious than others, but that's no reason to lump it all together as rubbish.

And you could argue that part of conventional medicine is about making money for the drug companies.

Demented Fri 19-Aug-05 00:11:03

Just say "I prefer drugs", cross your eyes then pretend to pass out on the floor.

Pruni Fri 19-Aug-05 07:12:50

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Jimjams Fri 19-Aug-05 08:10:56

You can get homeopathy on the NHS for free.

Personally I can't bear it when people tell me I should vaccinate my children. Or come out with some crap about speech development. Then I have to stop myself quoting research.

I suppose the closest was when I was told I just needed to pray for ds1. Hmmmmm. But it was meant well, so I said she was welcome to pray for him whenever she wanted.

littlerach Fri 19-Aug-05 09:12:36

We found cranial osteopathy was the only thing that really worked for DD2, it got her feeding and sleeping much better.
I much preferred spending the money on that, rather than various breast pumps, colic relief remedies and the like.

But it is a personal choice.

Jimjams Fri 19-Aug-05 09:19:37

cranial osteopathy can be almost like magic can;t it littlerach. I took ds2 when he was about 10 months. The osteopath said "does he cough up a lot of mucus" I replied "no never, never done that at all." She looked surprised, did something. The that night he sat up at midnight (was in bed with me) and just coughed up this huge pile of green gunk. I was stunned!

I went after seeing the effect it had on a friend's ds.

Unfortunately never did much for ds1

morningpaper Fri 19-Aug-05 09:21:53

Pruni I SOOOO agree with you.

Someone (a "holistic gardener") recently told me that growing lilies in my garden would help give ma good birth.


I hate to come over all Dana Scully about it but what p*sses me off is that a lot of these people talk as though these therapies have scientific a basis, which of course they don't. Homeopathy is my pet bugbear. It's fine if people admit that they think that the scientific approach (to medicine and health) is flawed, but it's when they talk as though alternative approaches come WITHIN the scientific approach that I find it maddening.

Homeopathy is more like the kind of 'religion' where you bury a steak in the ground at full moon and then find the love of your life. Religion is MUCH more sensible.

lockets Fri 19-Aug-05 09:29:33

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Caribbeanqueen Fri 19-Aug-05 09:31:44

at therapy hag!

Jimjams Fri 19-Aug-05 09:32:30

do you know anything about quantum physics morningpaper?

the pricipals behind the higher potencies of homeopathy are the same (but faaaar too mathematical for me to understand except in words).

The only potencies that can be explained in molecular terms are the very low ones (say 6C) There was a paper published (not about homeopathy) a few years ago showing how if you dilute a solution the molecules clump together. It was reported in new Scientist in about 2002.

Jimjams Fri 19-Aug-05 09:33:30

exactly lockets. Ds1 goes crazy on calpol but can react very well to a remedy. I would be bonkers to giive him calpol.

Must head off and find a few steaks to bury

franke Fri 19-Aug-05 09:38:38

I've used quite a few alternative therapies, some work, some don't. I think what Pruni's getting at is when people have 'discovered' alt therapies and get all evangelical about it. I've encountered this and it just has the effect of closing my mind through pure stubbornness

katierocket Fri 19-Aug-05 09:38:49

That's interesting jimjams (about homepathic medicine I mean).

Personally I hate it when people believe that the GPs word is gospel and western medicine is the best - what a total joke that is.

Cranial osteopathy was the only think that helped my DS when he had chronic colic and we tried all the supposed 'proper' remedies, which were utterly useless.

If you want to ignore it Pruni then that's your choice but I think your statement, "I understand it perfectly well, thanks. It's about making money, right?" is a pretty ignorant viewpoint IMO

fqueenzebra Fri 19-Aug-05 09:39:05

i had the impression that a huge number of drugs only work for a very small subset of people... this is why new drugs are always being developped. So maybe homeopathy/etc. is the same. Works for a small minority (whatever the explanation), and that small minority swears by it as a matter of course.

Tell you what I can't stand... it's conspiracy theorists. The people who spout a mad bunch of corporate goverment collusion evils... and they are utterly convinced and usually massively misinformed. Please tell me how to bite my tongue when I hear

Blair didn't give Leo MMR because he "knew" something we didn't (whereas, actually "we" don't know whether Leo had MMR or not),

a massive coverup is going on about the shooting of that Brazilian guy (because the media speculated so heavily that many think that the police have repeatedly changed their story of what happened, but the police have never released any official version of events),

Bush really doesn't want to catch Osama Bin Laden because Bin Laden's family has bribed the Bush family (but bin Laden's family fortune is from a huge construction firm that almost every big company ever doing dealings in Saudi will have encountered), etc., etc.....

happymerryberries Fri 19-Aug-05 09:39:38

Why am I worried about this thread? Goes off humming!

(Jimjams and i disagee about homeopathly btw and we still manage to talk to each other )

Aragon Fri 19-Aug-05 09:42:20

I have no problems with alternative therapies. If it works for you then great and I have seen cranial osteopathy work really well for colicky babies. But I do get concerned sometimes when people use it without checking the person prescribing.

Recently at work I saw a Mum with a baby who had a sore throat. She took him to the doctor who diagnosed tonsillitis and prescribed antibiotics.
This Mum diod not want to give antibiotics to such a young baby (Under 5 months) so decided to use a homeopathic remedy instead (fair enough).
She duely gave the remedy prescribed by I don't know who and 1 week later her baby was vomiting and having diarrhoea. She contacted NHS Direct and spoke to a doctor who told her:

1. That the remedy she was giving was conta-indicated in a baby on the type of formula her baby was on.

2.The dose she was giving would be considered an overdose in an adult ...... and she had been giving it regularly for a week.

Thankfully, her baby has now got the remedy out of her system and is seemingly no worse for her "overdose".

No problem with alternative remedies but I do have a problem with some of those prescribing them.

katierocket Fri 19-Aug-05 09:44:29

indeed aragon but you know, my SIL was prescribed some medicine for her DS once by a locum doctor. For some reason she was uncertain abotu giving it him and so she went back a few days later and saw her usual GP who was astounded that she had been given the particular medicine as it was categorically not suitable for her DS (and the locum should have been aware of this).

Horses for courses, there are rubbish practioners in every profession.

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