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Understanding emotional support pets and other non-traditional therapies

Emotional Support Pets

Not everything falls into the category of medicine when it comes to what ails us, and what makes us feel better. Sometimes the malaise is more emotional than physical. Sometimes it is non-clinical stress that is causing physical symptoms. This is often the case when doctors can’t find a physical cause for your discomfort.

When you have tried everything recommended by the doctor and still find no relief, you are not at the end of the road. There are other treatments, solutions, therapies or whatever term you prefer. It is not an exact science. But even medicine is not an exact science. They call it a medical practice, not medical perfection. So if you are in the phase of considering non-traditional treatments, consider these:

Therapy Pets

Pet Therapy
Therapy pets provide emotional support to patient

Seldom will a medical doctor prescribe a therapy pet. And perhaps that is something they should reconsider due to the following reported benefits:

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Better cardiovascular health
  • Lessening of pain
  • Decreased depression
  • Decreased loneliness

These are not trivial benefits. And not just any animal can provide them. The requirements for a therapy dog are fairly straightforward and can be determined online. It is even possible that the dog you already have qualifies as a therapy dog. Besides health benefits, therapy dogs bring the practical benefits of eliminating airline pet fees and apartment pet restrictions.

Many dogs are hypoallergenic which means that you don’t have to worry about dog allergies. These dogs have hair like humans rather than fur like most animals. The benefit is that these dogs can go anywhere, even in the cabin of an airplane without causing anyone else allergic discomfort. You wouldn’t want your therapy at the expense of everyone around you. With the right dog, you don’t have to sacrifice being around other people.


Aromatherapy as alternative therapy
Aromatherapy massage oils

There are many misconceptions about aromatherapy. The greatest of these is that it is only about enjoying a pleasing fragrance. If you like the smell of grass after a rain, go out and breathe in as much as you like. But don’t mistake that for aromatherapy. True aromatherapy is more associated with massage as that is the primary way in which it is administered. So be sure you are dealing with a well-qualified masseuse. Otherwise, it can do your more harm than good, regardless of how pleasing the smells.

It is also not about burning incense and more about the absorption of essential oils. And there is a lot to know about essential oils before getting started. You could be allergic to some. Other oils should never be used on women who are pregnant. And you should never buy bottles for your oils with rubber caps or sealants.

It is important to note that there is a spiritual component to aromatherapy, as is the case with many alternative medicines. But there are many people who enjoy benefits of this type of treatment without giving assent to the religious aspect of the treatment.



Yoga also has some roots in eastern mysticism that are completely unnecessary for a beneficial outcome. Yoga is sometimes called the art of stretching. There are yoga poses for all kinds of specialized situations. There are also generalized yoga poses to help you feel great.

There is almost no downside to yoga. And the upside is experienced by everyone from Hollywood stars to the fittest athletes from every sport. You can spend a lot of money on candles and mats and other accessories. But you can get started with yoga with no investment, and from where you are sitting or standing right now.

Pet therapy, aromatherapy, and yoga are far from the only alternative treatments for what might be troubling you. But the good news is that you don’t need to be troubled by anything to enjoy the benefits of what these therapies have to offer.

Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. If you are in need of medical care or emergency medical attention. Call 911, or the appropriate emergency number in your country. For other medical matters, call a medical doctor. Make an appointment. Get the tests. Do the science.

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