This study was performed in order to determine the perceptions of health and the health behaviors of the individuals in our society, and also, the study aimed to compare the knowledge and the behaviors related to complementary/alternative medicine (CAM) by examining socio-demographic characteristics. The study was carried out with 1000 adults (58% female and 42% male) within the ages of 18-80 who live in several regions in İzmir from various socio-economical levels. To be healthy was described by the 39% of subjects as to feel fine both psychologically and physically. It was determined that the participants were aware of the health preventive behaviors and they also tried to practice those behaviors. Health status, health behaviors, satisfaction with practitioners and the sources of knowledge about CAM might differ depending on some socio-demographic variables. In case of illness, half of the participants mainly visited a practitioner to cure where 1/3 of them both visited practitioner and searched for other alternative ways of treatment. Praying was found to be the most regularly used CAM therapy (31%). The sources of knowledge related to CAM were: TV-radio (76.6%); books, magazines, newspapers (76.1%) and the people who used these methods (53.3%). CAM was mostly used with the illnesses of muscular-skeleton system and psychological problems. 25.7% of people who both visited practitioner and used CAM in any case of illness, stated that they did not inform their practitioners about CAM use.
Complementary and alternative medicine, health behaviors, health perception