Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary health care profession, emphasizing prevention, treatment, and optimal health through the use of natural therapeutic methods and substances that encourage individuals’ inherent self-healing process. The practice of naturopathic medicine includes modern and traditional, scientific, and empirical methods.
The Philosophy of naturopathic medical practice :
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• Identify and Treat the Causes : The naturopathic doctors seek to identify and remove the underlying causes of illness rather than to merely eliminate or suppress symptoms.
• First Do No Harm : Naturopathic doctors follow three guidelines to avoid harming the patient:
• Utilize methods and medicinal substances which minimize the risk of harmful side effects, using the least force necessary to diagnose and treat;
• Avoid when possible the harmful suppression of symptoms; and
• Acknowledge, respect, and work with individuals’ self-healing process.
• Doctor as Teacher : Naturopathic doctors educate their patients and encourage self-responsibility for health. They also recognize and employ the therapeutic potential of the doctor-patient relationship.
• Treat the Whole Person : Naturopathic doctors treat each patient by taking into account individual physical, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social, and other factors. Since total health also includes spiritual health, naturopathic doctors encourage individuals to pursue their personal spiritual development.
• Prevention : Naturopathic doctors emphasize the prevention of disease by assessing risk factors, heredity and susceptibility to disease, and by making appropriate interventions in partnership with their patients to prevent illness.
Naturopathic practice includes the following diagnostic and therapeutic modalities: clinical and laboratory diagnostic testing, nutritional medicine, botanical medicine, naturopathic physical medicine (including naturopathic manipulative therapy), public health measures, hygiene, counseling, minor surgery, homeopathy, acupuncture, prescription medication, intravenous and injection therapy, and naturopathic obstetrics (natural childbirth).
What is a Naturopathic Doctor?
Naturopathic doctors combine the wisdom of nature with the rigors of modern science. Steeped in traditional healing methods, principles and practices, naturopathic medicine focuses on holistic, proactive prevention and comprehensive diagnosis and treatment. By using protocols that minimize the risk of harm, naturopathic doctors help facilitate the body’s inherent ability to restore and maintain optimal health. It is the naturopathic doctor’s role to identify and remove barriers to good health by helping to create a healing internal and external environment.
Naturopathic doctors work in private practices, hospitals, clinics and community health centers. NDs practice throughout the United States and Canada. Qualified naturopathic doctors undergo rigorous training before they become licensed health-care practitioners.
NDs treat all medical conditions and can provide both individual and family health care. Among the most common ailments they treat are allergies, chronic pain, digestive issues, hormonal imbalances, obesity, respiratory conditions, heart disease, fertility problems, menopause, adrenal fatigue, cancer, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. NDs can perform minor surgeries, such as removing cysts or stitching up superficial wounds. However, they do not practice major surgery. NDs are trained to utilize prescription drugs, although the emphasis of naturopathic medicine is the use of natural healing agents.
Your First Visit
A naturopathic doctor will take time with you. During your first appointment, your doctor will take your health history, find out about your diet, stress levels, use of tobacco and alcohol, and discuss why you’re there. He or she may perform an examination and order diagnostic tests. Naturopathic doctors keep themselves up-to-date on the latest scientific research and incorporate this evidence into their treatments. The naturopathic doctor will work with you to set up a customized health management strategy. If necessary, your doctor will refer you to other health-care practitioners.
A first visit with a patient may last one to two hours and follow-up visits range from 30 to 60 minutes, although this varies depending on the ND. Naturopathic doctors need sufficient time to ask questions and understand the patient’s health goals. NDs also need time to gather information, do an appropriate examination and teach his or her patients about managing their condition and improving their health. An ND may also use diagnostic tests to fully understand their patient’s health status. Besides taking the time to carefully and fully assess a patient’s root problem, NDs speak and understand the language of conventional medicine. They can diagnose the way MDs do—yet, they bring to the patient a whole new arsenal of treatments and insights. Instead of waiting for a disease to emerge, NDs work to head it off before it happens.
(Not All naturopathic practice available in New York State)
Source: American Association of Naturopathic Physicians
Why People choose Naturopathic Medicine?
A basic principle behind many kinds of Naturopathic Medicine is BALANCE, treat the whole person NOT the signs and symptoms.
Various forms of naturopathic medicine are designed to bring the body into balance, which in theory, can help restore health naturally.
This principle of balance is the most important factor for people who like to see naturopathic doctors. There are many benefits of using naturopathic medicine for a wide variety of conditions, especially chronic health conditions by changing diets and life style.
People do want to use naturopathic doctors because they don't want to use prescription drugs, surgery and radiation as their primary source of treatment. No drugs side effects, No sufferings and No pains for people using naturopathic medicine.