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Essentials of Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Practicing Psychologists

CE Credit: 2

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Length: 110 minutes

Session offered by Division 42.

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) are terms that describe a group of diverse medical and health care systems and practices that are not generally considered to be part of conventional health care. At present, in the United States, and in Western health care in general, there is a renewed interest in studying the use and effectiveness of CAM and a renewed interest by many in utilizing CAM. Data indicate that approximately 37% of Americans utilize some form of CAM each year. Thus, practicing psychologists may find that many of their clients are already utilizing some forms of CAM. Others may benefit from the use of CAM in addition to the psychotherapy or other treatment they receive from psychologists. This symposium provides practicing psychologists with essential information on each of 14 major CAM modalities, reviews relevant clinical and ethical issues and challenges with regard to integrating CAM into one's practice, and addresses concerns with the current state of research into CAM. Important issues addressed include competence and just what knowledge about CAM and its specific modalities each psychologist must have to provide clients with ethical and effective services, what training is needed to integrate each CAM modality into one's practice, resources for obtaining this training, what training, competencies, and certifications one should look for in CAM practitioner to whom one may refer clients, and ethical dilemmas one may face when attempting to integrate CAM modalities into one's practice, as well as knowing when the use of CAM would be contraindicated for clients. The 14 most commonly used CAM modalities are reviewed: 1) Dietary Supplements; 2) Meditation; 3) Yoga; 4) Acupuncture; 5) Massage Therapy; 6) Music Therapy; 7) Hypnosis; 8) Reiki; 9) Progressive Muscle Relation; 10) Movement Therapy; 11) Aromatherapy; 12) Biofeedback; 13) Chiropractic; and 14) Spirituality and Prayer.

Learning Objective 1
Describe the ethical and clinical challenges of integrating CAM into my practice.

Learning Objective 2
Describe the benefits and uses of the 14 most frequently used CAM modalities.

Presenters: Jeffrey E. Barnett, PsyD (Chair); Margaret Horne, MS; Rachel Firestone, MA; Allison Shale, MS


Supplementary Materials

  • Essentials of Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Practic