Holistic, wholistic, alternative, complementary – whatever name you want to put on so-called “non-traditional” approaches to healthcare, rarely do you see them combined so seamlessly with “traditional” Western medicine as in Dr. Larry Rosen’s new book, Treatment Alternatives for Children: Reduce Serious Side Effects with Natural Equivalents to Conventional Remedies for Common Childhood Ailments (“TAfC” for short).
Just because it says “Natural” in the title, don’t expect some hippy-dippy, New Age collection of pyramids, crystals, and healing stones. Larry Rosen, MD, is a respected pediatrician, an alum of MIT, and a very grounded and practical clinician. Along with co-author Jeff Cohen, Dr. Rosen presents a well-balanced look at treatment alternatives for some 100 or so of the most common childhood ailments. The book combines traditional Western scientific methods with the cross-cultural and time-tested methods of healing help from a variety of sources.
The authors draw from nutritional and herbal (also known as “biological”) remedies, but they also include homeopathy, naturopathy, traditional Chinese medicine, mind-body medicine, and more. They even have a section on “Toxic Troubles” covering the most common environmental dangers to children. As Dr. Rosen notes, “TAfC is truly an integrative guide.”
The compare-and-contrast approach they use is especially enjoyable. In each section’s “Side-by-Side Comparison” chart, you’ll see both traditional and non-traditional treatment options. They give choices, doses, side effects, brief background information on how each treatment choice works, and more.
Speaking of how things work, the authors’ focus upon providing scientific references for how each treatment option works. They respect the reader’s curiosity and right to understand why and how alternative or traditional health therapies work. This lends credence to each alternative plus allows for more informed choice by caregivers.
Written in a very readable format, the book is full of tips, tricks, and snippets of wisdom from both parents and medical professionals. This unique synthesis of both “medico” and layperson knowledge respects both sides of the healthcare equation, provider and consumer. This works very well in the authors’ hands, perhaps in part because Jeff is a parent of one of Dr. Rosen’s patients. Their truly participatory approach should be well-received by those on the fore of the current patient engagement and empowerment movement.
Mr. Cohen and Dr. Rosen have written a wonderful book full of helpful advice which is truly integrative in its healing offerings. It would make a wonderful new addition to any parent’s – or clinician’s – library.
(Actually, while the book is written to address childhood ailments, many issues are not limited to pediatric-sized folks. From acne to warts, from insect bites to poison ivy, from simple to significant problems, many of these are issues with which we all contend. It’d be a good reference for anyone!)
Posted – September 11, 2012
PS – We are proud to note that Dr. Rosen is a member of Health Nuts Media’s Pediatric Education Advisory Panel!