- Cancer Information
- Living well
- Complementary therapies
- Making treatment decisions
- Finding a complementary therapist
Finding a complementary therapist
Contacting a professional association is a good starting point for finding a therapist. Your family or friends or support group may also be able to recommend a therapist.
Some registered health professionals (e.g. doctors, nurses, pharmacists) are also qualified in a complementary therapy, such as nutritional and herbal medicine, hypnotherapy, counselling, acupuncture or massage.
Some complementary therapies may be offered at cancer treatment centres, or your centre can recommend practitioners with experience treating people with cancer in your local area.
What to consider when choosing a complementary therapist
- Confirm that the therapist is willing to communicate with your doctors about your conventional treatment, especially if you are using remedies that may interfere with this treatment.
- Check whether the therapist would like to see a list of the medicines you’re taking or your conventional treatment plan. This reduces the risk of them dispensing remedies or other treatments that might interact with your conventional medicines or treatments.
- Keep a record of the treatments given and medicines or supplements you have been prescribed.
- Write down any questions you have or use the question checklist.
- Take someone with you to appointments to offer support, get involved in the discussion, take notes or simply listen.
- Check out our glossary if there is a word you don’t understand.
Suzanne Grant, Senior Acupuncturist, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, NSW; A/Prof Craig Hassed, Senior Lecturer, Department of General Practice, Monash University, VIC; Mara Lidums, Consumer; Tanya McMillan, Consumer; Simone Noelker, Physiotherapist and Wellness Centre Manager, Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre, VIC; A/Prof Byeongsang Oh, Acupuncturist, University of Sydney and Northern Sydney Cancer Centre, NSW; Sue Suchy, Consumer; Marie Veale, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council Queensland, QLD; Prof Anne Williams, Nursing Research Consultant, Centre for Nursing Research, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, and Chair, Health Research, School of Health Professions, Murdoch University, WA.
View the Cancer Council NSW editorial policy.
Click below to download a PDF booklet on this topic.
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