We are surrounded by plants. We eat, drink, and read about plants. Still several Indian homes believe on home remedies. They are readily available in the kitchen. So I would prefer calling them kitchen remedies. When I get an ulcer in the oral cavity my mother advise me place a piece of coconut over the area. If I get a boil over my skin my father say to apply turmeric. I was surprised to see the remarkable healing produced by them. This healing information is transferred from generation to generation but not documented. But we need to know the proper scientific evidence behind it. Scientific in the form of how, why and what happened. Modern science needs proof or data in the form of published article in the magazines and journals.
I prescribe pain killers to my patients but just think of olden days before the invention of these drugs. How they would have tolerated pain, throat infection or swelling. How physicians used to know the disease and treat their patients?
Nowadays we are well developed in assessing the disease and treating disease. Invention of microscope made a potential impact in the medical field in knowing the infections and cancer. On the other side invention of X rays gave a negative replica of our human body from head to toe. Several advanced technologies like computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasonography and recent radioisotope imaging reduced the physician’s workload to assess the disease. These recent technologies have made a huge impact in saving lives of the patient.
Medical field is well developed not only in knowing the disease but also in managing the disease in the recent decades. Inventions of medications such as analgesics (drugs that reduce pain but not the problem that cause pain), antibiotics (remove the infection, pus), and antibiotics drugs such as antitubercular drugs (against tuberculosis), chemotherapeutic drugs (against cancer) and several other drugs to treat joint problem, gastritis made patient to led a normal life.
Even though these drugs relieve the problem of the patient but a huge problem encountered was the side effects. It may be a minor problem as nausea, vomiting, stomach pain to a major problem as anaemia, etc. So these patients have to make an appointment for side effects.
Past few decades patients are shifting their view towards alternative medicine. Some research activities have shown a good result against diseases. Due to lack of encouragement and sponsorship herbal research is lagging behind. Few general physicians encourage their patients to practice yoga, meditation and consumption of green vegetables. Such practice reduces stress, depression, obesity and provides antioxidants. Several lab studies with herbs are being conducted with good results.
Students are being encouraged to join alternative medicine because of its scope in the future. These alternative medicines are taught as professional degrees and diploma programs. Western countries encourage and teach alternative medicine as regular and online courses. After the degree, students receive their certificate to practice. I would like to conclude with three important points
1. Research: Regular research activities have to be conducted. Such research activities have to design properly.
2. Encouragement: Research scholars have to be encouraged with sponsorship by the institution or the university
3. Documentation: after the study completion the project has to be documented by publishing the results in the journals, magazines or books.