Some of the more common therapies are explained here. There are links to further information, organisations and resources:
Acupuncture involves the insertion of fine needles into specific sites in the body. It may help a wide range of disorders. The following site has more information:
Australian Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine Association
Phone: (07) 3324 2599 or national practitioner referral Freecall: 1300 725 334.
Aromatherapy uses natural essential oils to help a person's mood or health. The following site has more information.
The International Aromatherapy and Aromatic Medicine Association
Information about natural health care techniques and practices based on essential oils, and finding a therapist.
Chirporactors work on spinal health. The following site has more information:
The Chiropractors’ Association of Australia
Phone: (02) 4731 8011
Homoeopathic medicine mimics or provokes the symptoms of a patient's disease to strengthen the body's ability to heal itself. The following sites have more information.
The Australian Association of Professional Homeopaths
Australian Homoeopathic Association
Phone: (07) 4636 5081
This site promotes homoeopathy in Australia and lists registered practitioners.
Meditation is a self-help tool for promoting good health and managing stress.
Music therapy uses music to stimulate positive changes in four areas of human functioning. The following site has more information:
Australian Music Therapy Association.
Naturopathy uses a number of methods to promote the balancing of the body so that illness is less likely to occur in the future. The following site has more information:
Australian Naturopathic Practitioners Association
Osteopathy uses manipulation of the body to treat a wide range of symptoms and illnesses. The following site has more information.
Australian Osteopathic Association
Phone: 1800 467 836
In pet therapy, trained animals and their handlers are used to improve the wellbeing of people requiring care.
Reflexology applies pressure on various points on the feet, hands and ears. This helps to address stress, anxiety, and tension. The following site has more information.
Reflexology Association of Australia
Phone: (07) 3396 9001 or Reflexology Hotline: 1300 733 711
The site has information on reflexology and finding a registered practitioner. The hotline links to a representative or practitioner in each state and territory.
Massage therapy involves deep or light pressure being applied to the muscles and other soft tissues.
Choosing a therapist
It is important to choose a qualified complementary therapy practitioner. Many therapies have regulatory bodies that will help you to find a therapist. Some palliative care services may have contacts for complementary services.
The UK website Macmillan Cancer Support provides some helpful tips on choosing therapy. The Australian Natural Therapists Association has information on natural therapies and finding a registered practitioner.