Though it probably shouldn’t be, one of the hardest things for me to comprehend is judgment in the natural health community. I’ve experienced many practitioners and individuals who assume that if natural methods of healing fail, then the user is to blame. They believe that you obviously didn’t try hard enough or those wonderful ways of healing would have worked. Quite frankly, that’s a load of crap.
Natural healing has limits. Western medicine does too. If everyone hadn’t noticed, death still happens regardless of which methods of healing one uses. No method is failproof. Such is the reality of being human in a body with an unknown expiration date on it.
I personally use both natural and Western methods of healing. I start with the natural and complementary routes, but when they fail, I then turn to Western medicine. Because I work with integrative practitioners, when I go to them for a prescription, I’m always able to tell them, “I’ve already tried these herbs, oils, homeopathics, acupuncture, chiropractic, massage, etc., in resolving this situation to no avail.” They respect that if I am coming to them, then I likely have reached the end of the options in natural healing.
One of the few areas which I feel that natural healing is severely lacking is in pain relief. When dealing with chronic and severe pain, white willow bark and other herbs just don’t cut it. I’m a woman who has easily handled natural childbirth including breech births and a 10+ pound baby born at home, but I am not capable of handling the pain from migraines, Lyme, shingles, or dental work. I am not Superwoman. I require drugs. Acupuncture, massage, chiropractic, meditation, herbs, and other methods can help lessen the pain so that I don’t require as many drugs, but they are not enough.
So when do I use natural methods and when do I not? That depends on the situation. If I am ever in a car accident and I have a severed limb, please start the morphine drip first, notify the surgeon, and then call my complementary practitioners to help me with the healing process after my limb has been reattached. For ear infections or sinus infections, however, I start with natural healing methods. In the past 11+ years, I’ve never had to use antibiotics for a sinus or ear infections. Neither have any of my kids. We’ve been able to treat them all herbally (especially the viral ones that wouldn’t have responded to antibiotics anyway).
One downside to using natural methods is that they take longer to kick in. Antibiotics often help within a few days (and sometimes sooner). Herbs are slower acting, but they don’t destroy the beneficial bugs in one’s gut the way antibiotics do. With my hypersensitive body, it takes months to years to clean up the damage that antibiotics can cause to my system, but herbs don’t do that kind of damage.
So when do I switch from herbs and other natural methods to Western drugs? That’s also dependent on the situation. I recently had bacterial bronchitis which is going around Austin. I have no idea where or how I picked it up. I was very sick as were most others I’ve heard about who’ve battled this bug. It took me 12 days to conquer it, and I spent 10 of those days in bed. It seems like two weeks was not an uncommon length to be sick with the bronchitis even among those I know who used antibiotics for it. It was a rough bug. I was taking three different herbal formulas plus the maximum daily dose of Vitamin E to help fight it since that was what my body indicated it needed. On day seven, I began seriously questioning whether it was time to turn to antibiotics though I knew that they would cause a bevy of long term problems if I did. I turned to another intuitive healer I know and asked her to check in with higher guidance; she got told that it was going to take about two weeks to fight it with bronchitis with herbs, but that we should recheck then about antibiotics at the end of the two weeks if I hadn’t healed. The next day, I started doing better. Day seven had just been rock bottom.
(If you wonder why I turned to another intuitive for help, I was too emotionally involved in this situation to be an impartial message recipient. I needed someone who wasn’t so involved in the situation to help me. Just as doctors see other doctors when they are sick, I occasionally have to turn to other intuitives when I can’t get a clear reading on myself.)
In contrast, two years ago I had a dental abscess explode into misery over Labor Day weekend (because when else would something major happen but when your dentist is on a four day vacation?). I started on intensive herbs over the weekend before I could get in to see my dentist on Tuesday to help the situation as best I could, but it was clear to everyone involved in my health care that it was antibiotic time due to how extensively the infection had spread. Because my immune system wasn’t functioning as well then, it took three weeks of high dose antibiotics to clear the dental infection even after extraction of the tooth. Unfortunately, though, I then picked up a serious gut infection from the damage the antibiotics did to my intestines. It took a full six months and another hefty round of two different antibiotics (after herbs failed to make even a dent in the intestinal infection) for me to recover from all the damage the original antibiotics did. I didn’t have much choice in using the antibiotics for the abscess, but there were major consequences as a result.
Whatever methods you decide to use in your healing process, please know that I will not judge you for them. I will help you in finding alternatives if you feel what you are doing is not helping or if it is even hurting you. I will consult with higher guidance to see if they have suggestions as to which methods you might want to begin with. But whatever you chose to do, that is your decision to make. I’m not here to judge you for your choices.
© 2014 Green Heart Guidance