Complementary Therapies

31 January 2024 – 2 Minute Read

What is the difference between complementary and alternative therapies?

Complementary therapies include types of therapy that you can use alongside conventional medical treatment to make you feel better, or to help you cope with the more traditional medical treatment you are being offered. Alternative therapies can include the same types of therapy as complementary therapies but they are used instead of conventional medical treatment, rather than alongside it.

How effective are complementary therapies?

Research into complementary therapies is mixed but there are some that have been found to be effective when used alongside conventional treatments . Some treatments have been found to be more effective than others so it is important to do your research before you choose what therapy is right for you.

How are complementary therapies administered?

Each complementary therapy is administered differently. Some require a practitioner to deliver a treatment, such as massage or acupuncture, while others rely on the therapy to be undertaken with participation from the client, such as meditation or herbal medicine. To find out more about how your chosen therapy is administered, search the directory to get contact details for complementary therapies near you.

Is acupuncture a complementary therapy?

Yes, acupuncture is a complementary therapy. Acupuncture is a therapy based on an ancient Chinese treatment and involves a professional putting thin needles into your skin at very specific pressure points around your body. Acupuncture professionals, or acupuncturists, use the therapy to treat a wide range of health conditions, including chronic pain, joint pain, depression, anxiety, infertility and migraines.

What complementary therapies help depression?

There are many different complementary therapies that can help depression and other mental health conditions, with one of the most popular being acupuncture. Other therapies that can be considered for the treatment of depression include aromatherapy, massage, meditation, yoga, herbal remedies and homeopathy.

Are complementary therapies safe?

Complementary therapies are safe as long as they are being carried out by qualified, experienced professionals. Before undergoing a complementary therapy, check that your chosen therapist has the appropriate qualifications and is registered with a professional association as they are likely to provide a better level of care. Each therapy requires different skills so it is important to research the therapy you want to use before booking an appointment to make sure you are happy they are qualified to perform the treatment.

How are complementary therapies registered and regulated?

Outside of chiropractic and osteopathy, there are no complementary therapies that are regulated by law in the UK. However, most professional therapists will undergo qualifications and register with an appropriate association before launching their business. Contact a local therapist via the search directory on to find out about their qualifications before booking your therapy.

Can I claim for complementary therapies on health insurance?

Some health insurance providers will cover complementary therapies. However, this is not the case for all health insurance policies. Before booking your complementary therapy, get in touch with your health insurance provider to find out if they are willing to cover the costs associated with the complementary therapy you would like to use.