5 Popular Types of Alternative Therapy

Simply defined, alternative therapy is any form of practiced therapy that falls into the category of alternative medicine. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, we can describe this type of medicine as “any of various systems of healing or treating disease not included in the traditional medical curricula of the United States and Britain.” These alternative approaches in medicine are quite widespread and consequently can vary in expert-touted efficacy from one to another.

If you would like to learn a little more about this thought-provoking subject, read on. We’ve put together a list of five of the most popular, alternative therapy methods. Let’s get to it.


As far back as the 17th century, we’ve seen cryotherapy put to use for a variety of medical purposes. Cryo, meaning cold, and therapy meaning cure, cryotherapy is the use of cold temperatures on the body for therapeutic purposes. These cold temps can be administered in a number of ways at home or professionally and may be either local or general in use. Most commonly, this type of therapy alternative is used to treat issues at the dermal level but has also been used in various, other applications.

Regression Therapy

The finer details behind regression therapy vary from one belief system to the next. Despite these subtle variations though, the premise is that of complete mental and soul alignment. The theory here is that by numerous means, our deepest, most often unrealized human consciousness can be affected in in many ways in life. This in turn affects our overall psyche and mental well-being.

Regression therapy thus sees the sufferer participating in regression sessions with an expert in the field. Through regression, the expert seeks to guide the patient into their own deeper levels of consciousness not ordinarily explored – often mirroring hypnosis. From here, deep psychological remedies and peace-making steps can take place, leading to a much improved psyche in the end.

Aversion Therapy

An aversion is a dislike of something, or a deterrent. When someone is trying to make a life change involving difficult-to-break habits and patterns, they may look to aversion therapy as a solution. Overseen by a professional or performed at home without professional help, this practice simply attaches a deterrent to the habit or past pattern that is targeted for change.

Nail-biters may apply disgusting-tasting things or even tape products to their fingertips in order to deter further biting. Those struggling with weight loss may maintain a healthy food inventory at home so as to incite an inconvenient trip to the store whenever craving unhealthy foods. The sky is the limit here when it comes to ways to apply aversion therapy to an individual and their targeted habit.

Therapeutic Yoga

Most people are inherently aware of yoga. For those who are not, yoga is essentially a mental, physical, and often spiritual practice born ages ago in India. Practitioners often practice via forming anatomical poses while also simplifying thought and focusing on breathing and relaxation.

While yoga itself is inherently believed to be therapeutic by its basic nature, specialized practicing gurus have at times refined their particular styles of practice to focus on therapeutic benefits specifically. Specialized positions, breathing patterns, and thought processes are thus available for nearly any ailment imaginable.

Massage Therapy

Nearly every person alive today has at some point experienced muscle tightness, tension, soreness, or even mental stress. Massage therapy is alternative medicine’s most popular remedy for these types of complaints. In massage therapy a trained masseuse physically massages, kneads, and physically works on muscles and areas of the body that are problematic. Not only is there a physiological benefit in the loosening of stiff muscles but there is also a mentally therapeutic aspect as well. Some undergo massage therapy on a regular basis while others only seek it out in reaction to an occasional problem.

In the end, it is probably safe to say that there are as may types of alternative therapies out there as there are conditions calling for them. Again, these can vary in reported efficacy and doctor backing. Despite such variations here though, these five alternative therapy options are absolutely some of today’s most popular.