Out of the Allopathic Box with Alternative Medicine Degree

Alternative medicine degree programs can teach students methods of caring for the sick and maintaining good health. Alternative medicine experts become acupuncturists, masseuses and aromatherapists among other professions. One who holds an alternative medicine degree is uniquely qualified to offer aid and comfort to those who may think they have nowhere else to turn for relief.

Alternative Medicine Degree Information

Areas of Study

Those who choose to study alternative medicine will choose from a considerable variety of non-traditional health management techniques. These include, but are not limited to, herbal medicine, acupuncture, bioenergetics, Feng Shui, holistic skin care, iridology, kinesiology, hypnotherapy and nutrition.

Career Opportunities

There are actually a great many health careers that can begin with a degree in alternative medicine. Some of those with alternative medicine degrees go on to become acupuncturists, traditional Chinese medicine practitioners, chiropractors, aromatherapists, nutritionists, lifestyle coaches, masseuses, herbologists, hypnotists, yogis and music therapists.

Earning Potential

Since there are so many different areas in which one can practice alternative medicine it is difficult to pin down a specific salary range. That being said, chiropractors can earn in the high five figures or six figures. Licensed acupuncturists can make anywhere from around $30,000 to around $100,000 a year. Life coaches and herbalists can set their own rates of payment.

Study Options

An associates or bachelors degree in alternative medicine will allow students to study the workings of the body and how the body can benefit from non-traditional medical techniques. Students enrolled in alternative medicine courses will learn how to help the body heal itself and how to treat the entire patient rather than just localized symptoms.

Master's Degree

Master's degrees in alternative medicine are available for those who are ready to pursue a full-time career in alternative medicine. Students can earn a Master of Arts in Holistic Wellness, a Master of Science in Holistic Nutrition and even a Master Herbalist Certificate. These degrees will indicate to those looking for non-traditional medical techniques to ease their suffering that you have the desire and ability to offer assistance.

Further Education

Those wishing to fully immerse themselves in alternative medicine disciplines can go on to earn a doctoral degree. Ph.D.s are available in natural health and holistic nutrition as well as in naturopathy, the branch of alternative medicine that focuses on the bodyís ability to heal itself. Interested students can also get a Doctor of Naturopathy or a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine.

Choosing a Degree

Students looking for a career path that will foster their love of natural cures for physical ills will be drawn to an alternative medicine degree. Those who feel attuned with nature and believe that people can find what they need to lead happier, healthier lives without resorting to complex man-made chemicals or procedures are ideal for an alternative medicine discipline.

Getting Your Degree Online

The Internet is the perfect venue to pursue your degree in alternative medicine. There are a number of different accredited online universities that offer top degree programs in all the best areas of alternative medicine including herbal studies, massage and naturopathy. Due to the low overhead associated with an online degree, universities can afford to focus continuing education distance learning programs on the specific area of alternative medicine that interests students, rather than a broad spectrum that may cover areas the student is not interested in pursuing.

Getting Your Degree Offline

If you can find a school that provides a physical program in alternative medicine to attend, you have a wonderful opportunity. Make sure the courses are offered at an accredited university and pay special attention to the degree requirements if you hope to leave the school with a bachelors or masters in a branch of alternative medicine. Remember that there are many different areas of alternative medicine, so be sure to find a college or university that has a program that suits your specific alternative medicine interests.

Choosing Your Alternative Medicine Degree Path

The choice to seek out an alternative medicine degree is a bold one. By definition, alternative medicine is not a mainstream pursuit, and you may face many obstacles and challenges along the way that those who study a more traditional branch of science may avoid. Remember that if there were not a need for the services of alternative medicine professionals, degree programs such as the one you are considering would not be offered at all. In communities where alternative medicine is accepted and even preferred, the right alternative medical professional can flourish. As a practitioner of alternative medicine, you can give hope to those who might otherwise be hopeless and offer health solutions that no one else will offer.

While the challenges of studying alternative medicine are many, the rewards are great. Whether a student takes a few courses in holistic medicine or completes the requirements for a doctorate in naturopathy, those who choose to study in this field will have a tremendous chance to build a career that may provide fulfillment throughout their entire lives.

Alternative Medicine Student Guide

In many cases, alternative medicine predates traditional medicine. As today's citizens find themselves increasingly concerned with the intrusion of man-made chemicals and technology on their life and health, more and more are turning to alternative medicine practitioners to help them regain their feeling of well being and help them get their life back on the right path.

Alternative Medicine Books

Complementary and alternative medicine covers a wide range of medical procedures that the mainstream medical community does not fully recognize. As such, students will have to do some research to find the right alternative medicine books for the kind of alternative medicine they wish to study. Some basic texts to start with include The American Holistic Health Association Complete Guide to Alternative Medicine by William Collinge, New Medicine by Kenneth Pelletier, Alternative Medicine: The Definitive Guide by Burton Goldberg, John W. Anderson and Larry Trivieri, and The New York Times Guide to Alternative Health by Jane E. Brody and Denise Grady.

Alternative Medicine Articles And Databases

Access to good articles and article databases is key to the study of alternative medicine. Since the methods used in alternative medicine are not subject to wide scientific scrutiny, any research that proves the efficacy of alternative medicine methods is paramount. Alternative medicine articles can be accessed through the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). Information about the center can be accessed through their website (Nccam.Nih.gov).

Alternative Medicine Online Journals

Alternative medicine journals are another important way to keep ahead of the latest developments and research in the field of complementary and alternative medicine. Some alternative medicine journals you may wish to examine online are the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the American Journal of Chinese Medicine and the Journal of Herbal Pharmacotherapy.

Alternative Medicine Research Tools

A terrific resource for information about complementary and alternative medicine is the Alternative Medicine Foundation (AmFoundation.org). This site provides details about alternative medicine journals and articles as well as upcoming events, research projects and other current information in the field.

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