Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary health care system that blends modern scientific knowledge with traditional and natural forms of medicine. The naturopathic philosophy is to stimulate the healing power of the body and treat the underlying cause of disease. Symptoms of disease are seen as warning signals of improper functioning of the body, and unfavourable lifestyle habits. Naturopathic Medicine emphasizes disease as a process rather than as an entity.
Treating both acute and chronic conditions, naturopathic treatments are chosen based on the individual patient – their physiological, structural, psychological, social, spiritual, environment and lifestyle factors. In addition to diet and lifestyle changes, natural therapies including botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, naturopathic manipulation and traditional Chinese medicine/acupuncture, may also be used during treatments.
In Canada, the naturopathic medical profession’s infrastructure includes accredited educational institutions, professional licensing, national standards of practice, participation in many federal health committee initiatives, and a commitment to state-of-the-art scientific research.
Benefits of seeing a Naturopath
There are many reasons to consider seeing a naturopathic doctor, whether you’re dealing with a current illness, concerned about preventing future disease, or simply interested in pursuing a higher level of health.
“Natural” is not a synonym for safe. Many products sold under that label can interact with medications or make certain conditions worse if used inappropriately. Naturopathic doctors are trained to understand these therapies and the risks involved in them, and also understand the pathology underlying symptoms to guide appropriate treatment. I can recognize medical red flags, and have the knowledge to refer you to other practitioners when the necessary treatment is beyond my scope of practice.
Naturopaths treat the individual, not the disease. Symptoms viewed in isolation can appear to be identical in different people, but the cause of those symptoms could be completely different. I explore all aspects of health to connect symptoms and try to find that underlying cause. I look at all the facets of your lifestyle to choose the best treatment for you.
Extra Care and Attention
I have the luxury of longer appointments than the typical medical doctor, which allow me to really understand you and all the factors involved in your health. It also gives me a chance to really listen to what the problem is, how it is impacting your day-to-day life, and what your personal goals are in coming to see me.
Empowering Patients to Take Control of their Own Health
Naturopathic medicine works best for people who want to have control over how they feel. As a naturopath, I see my role as helping to guide you towards better choices, but, in the end, the choice always remains in your hands. Informed consent is incredibly important to me, not just as a formality or legal issue, but as a vital part of supporting your right to make your own health choices. I strive to explain my reasons for all my treatments and give you an opportunity to voice your thoughts and concerns so that we can work together to find a plan that will work for you.