September 25, 2008

The Holistic Truth ; Choosing a Healer Requires Careful Scrutiny

It's common for people being treated for an ailment to wonder what else they could be doing to promote healing. If you decide you're open to alternative medicine, how do you find a provider? And how do you make sure that person is qualified?

Acupuncturists, chiropractors and herbalists fall under the label of holistic healers, as do a slew of others who offer potential remedies that mainstream medicine doesn't (yet) embrace.

When looking for a holistic healer, talk to your friends.

"Find out who they are going to and who is helping them," said Dr. Robert Baritz, who runs a wellness center at 450 Pleasant St. in Brockton. He is the former president of the Greater Brockton Chiropractic Society.

"Other than that, ideally you would go into the office and see (how) it looks," Baritz said.

"A professional looking clinic doesn't guarantee professional results, but it makes it more likely that you're going to be seeing the kind of holistic practitioner you want to see."

Check whether the practitioner is accredited by the national organizations that oversee his field and set standards of care.

Be wary of doctors who are only certified by the companies that make products they are selling.

"It doesn't mean there aren't any good unlicensed individuals," said Baritz. "But if you don't know where to go, your best bet is to start with a licensed individual."

- Sky Gidge For Living Well

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