Naturopathic Medicine

Naturopathic medicine concentrates on whole-patient wellness and attempts to find the underlying cause of the patient’s condition rather than focusing solely on symptomatic treatment. The medicine is tailored to the patient and emphasizes prevention and self-care. Naturopathic physicians cooperate with all other branches of medical science referring patients to other practitioners for diagnosis or treatment when appropriate.

Naturopathic medicine is dedicated to the study and celebration of nature’s healing powers. It utilizes the most natural, least invasive and least toxic therapies to treat illness and to promote wellness by viewing the body as an integrated whole. Naturopathic medicine is defined by principles rather than by methods or modalities. Above all, it honors the body’s innate wisdom to heal itself.

Naturopathic Medicine is based on the following six principals:

1. Vis Medicatrix Naturae: The Healing Power of Nature

The body has an inherent power and ability to heal itself. A naturopathic physician aims to restore and support this healing process by using therapies in harmony with natural processes. When the body is provided with the essential tools to restore itself, time and nature run their course.

2. Tolle Causam: Identify and Treat the Cause

The basis of healing starts with identifying and treating the root cause of the dis-ease. Whether the causes are mental, emotional, spiritual, physical or environmentally based, true healing is attained when treatment is focused on removing the underlying cause. Symptoms are expressions of the body’s attempt to heal itself, but are not the root cause of the dis-ease.

3. Primum Non Nocere: First Do No Harm

A naturopathic physician’s first goal is to use treatment therapies that are highly effective but minimally aggressive,  least invasive and least toxic while leading the patient to optimal health. This minimizes the risk of harmful side-effects. Methods designed to suppress symptoms without addressing the underlying cause are considered to be more harmful than beneficial.

4. Tolle Totum: Treat the Whole Person

Health and disease result from a complex interaction of physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, genetic, environmental and social factors. Disease and symptoms occur when these systems are stressed beyond capacity. The naturopathic physician must treat the whole person by taking all of these factors into account when designing and individualizing comprehensive treatment options. Additionally, the naturopathic physician must encourage individuals to pursue their personal spiritual development. The harmonious functioning of all aspects of the individual is essential to prevention and recovery from disease.

5. Docere: Doctor as Teacher

Docere translates to teacher. It is a naturopathic physician’s duty to educate, encourage and empower each patient to initiate self-responsibility for their health. The patient-doctor relationship is very important in the success of achieving optimal health.

6. Prevention is the Best Cure

As Benjamin Franklin so eloquently said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” The prevention of disease and the attainment of optimal health in patients are primary objectives of naturopathic medicine. These objectives are accomplished through education and promotion of healthy ways of living for one cannot be healthy in an unhealthy environment. The naturopathic physician assesses risk factors and hereditary susceptibility to disease and makes appropriate interventions in partnership with their patients to avoid further harm and risk to the patient as well as prevent illness.

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