Discussion Post


Reply to Nichole
      The Mind-Body-Spirit connection is an integral aspect of healthcare. A holistic approach
to patient care is vital. If the COVID pandemic has taught us nothing else, it has taught
society the importance of mental health which should be included in the holistic approach to
patient care. The complementary health approach (CHA) plays an important role in the
holistic approach. Many general nurse practitioners (GNPs) personally used CHA, with
massage therapy, mind–body therapies, and dietary supplements being used the
most (Geisler., et al 2021). Pain, dementia, depression, and anxiety are the top reported
geriatric health conditions for which GNPs report that patients use CHA (Geisler., et al 2021).
CHA therapies that are beneficial for dementia include music therapy, pet therapy, oral
supplements, and aromatherapy. Dementia patients have the potential for a highly increased
quality of life with the use of these CHA measures and many other CHA measures. CHA that
is often used for pain relief includes massage, acupuncture, energy healing, chiropractic, and
movement therapy (Geisler., et al 2021). CHA that can be used for depression and anxiety
treatments include massage, music therapy, pet therapy, and movement therapy (Geisler.,
et al 2021).
“Hippocrates said, ‘The natural healing force within each one of us is the greatest
force in getting well.’ Hypnosis is a tool that nurse practitioners (NPs) can use to help patients
tap into their innate healing force to achieve better health outcomes” (Phillips, 2020). I have
known a few patients who have undergone hypnosis to aid in weight loss. Honestly, it did not
work for them, but I think one must believe in it for it to be beneficial.  The two most known
uses of hypnosis are for smoking cessation and weight loss (Phillips, 2020). Hypnosis is
intended for behavioral and psychological applications including addictions, relapse events,
stress management, fears, anger management, eating disorders, anxiety, and depression
(Phillips, 2020).
Aromatherapy has been found to increase patient satisfaction with care, increase a sense of
patient engagement, and reduce anxiety and stress (Lowring, 2019). Essential oils are a great
example of aroma therapy.  Healthcare providers, especially those trained in Western
medicine, are often unfamiliar with the benefits of the use of these complementary therapies
(Lowring, 2019). It is becoming increasingly common for patients to inquire about more
natural alternatives for their overall health and wellness. To meet the needs and preferences of
patients, it is necessary to stay up to date on treatment modalities that best meet both mental
and physical needs. The ability of therapeutic essential oils to reduce stress and anxiety has
been demonstrated in various animal studies, but evidence from methodological trials is
lacking to fully recommend use in human populations at this time (Lowring, 2019).
As AGACNPs we can become knowledgeable enough to encourage alternative
therapies for patients to assist them in both healing and preventative care in the same manner
as we stay up to date on other topics. Healthcare providers should stay as up-to-date as
possible on CHA. Aromatherapy, massage, and movement therapy (to name a few) are all
fairly low-risk modalities of CHA to use in the acute care setting. Many primary care
providers are also certified in acupuncture.
Geisler, Carol PhD, RN1; Cheung, Corjena PhD, RN2; Johnson Steinhagen, Stasia MA3;
Brueggemann, Alvina PhD4. Knowledge and clinical dialogues about complementary
health approaches among nurse practitioners specialized in geriatrics. Journal of the
American Association of Nurse Practitioners 33(11):p 886-895, November 2021. |
Lowring, Lauren Mosshart MSN, FNP1. Using therapeutic essential oils to support the
management of anxiety. Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners
31(10):p 558-561, October 2019. | DOI: 10.1097/JXX.0000000000000227
Phillips, Barbara C. APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP, MN (Clinician, Hypnosis Mind Works)1.
Hypnosis in the clinical setting. Journal of the American Association of Nurse
Practitioners 32(5):p 351-353, May 2020. | DOI: 10.1097/JXX.0000000000000422

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