WHAT IS NATUROPATHIC MEDICINE?
Naturopathic Medicine is a holistic specialty care approach to health and wellness that focuses on the interconnectedness of the body, rather than disease itself. The goal is to find the causes of illness, and how different systems in the body affect each other. Natural therapies are used to support the body in its own healing process.
The bedrock of Naturopathy is the health and well being of the individual. Naturopathic Doctors choose the most appropriate type of therapy or combination of therapies individualized for each different patient. Some of these include: nutrition, exercise, mind body medicine, lifestyle counseling, body work, herbs, nutritional supplements, enzyme therapy, amino acid therapy, homeopathy, and flower essences.
The following are important principles that we follow:
- Primum non nocere (First do no harm)
- Vis mediatrix Naturae (Healing power of nature)
- Tolle Causum (Treat the Cause)
- Tolle Totum (Heal the whole person)
- Docere (Doctor as teacher)
WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM NATUROPATHIC MEDICINE?
Anyone can benefit from naturopathic medicine. If you've visited many doctors for your condition, felt rushed through your healthcare, been told, “Nothing is wrong with you,” felt nothing works, and wondered if you can really feel great, this is the right place for your care. Whether you need support maintaining health, or have a medical condition you would like to approach naturally, naturopathic medicine can benefit you.
Naturopathy is also helpful for those working in the performing arts and entertainment industry, supporting health while working under rigorous schedules. Anti-aging support, immune support, energy/stamina support and stress reduction are common health goals.
The following are frequent office visit concerns:
- Fatigue and Adrenal Exhaustion
- Gastrointestinal issues/Reflux
- Frequent infections/Allergies/Asthma
- Autoimmune conditions/Thyroid Disease
- Menstrual problems/Gynecological concerns/Fertility
- Chronic Yeast Problems
- Men's Health/Prostate issues
- Diabetes/Cardiovascular disease/Hypertension
- Weight loss/Obesity
- Bone Health
- Endocrine/Neurological disorders
- Headaches/Toxicity/Environmental sensitivities
- ADHD/Sensory Processing Disorder/Memory issues
- Mood swings/Depression/Anxiety/Insomnia
- Skin conditions
HOW IS DR. CHAN'S PRACTICE DIFFERENT?
I support you as a patient, providing exceptional care so you can have the health to achieve your life goals, and dreams. Any obstacles to being healthy, such as unsatisfactory care, lack of information, or even lack of belief that improvements can be made, need not be obstacles. My goal is to inspire you to be inspired.
I spend time with my patients, and am open to discussing options of care so you feel comfortable with the approach. I believe in educating you so that you can make informed decisions. I believe that you have the tools within yourself to get better, standing alongside as your ally. I believe in empowering you to make healthy choices. It is my responsibility to you, as my patient, to provide the best of care, keep up with latest scientific advances, literature, and art of medicine. For more information visit my personal website at www.modernintegrativemedicine.com
WHAT IS A TYPICAL VISIT LIKE?
There isn't a typical visit. Visits are different patient to patient because care is individualized. However generally, a visit starts with a session of talking about your medical issues thoroughly. Discussion of symptoms other than your main complaint is important because they often are related in some way. I may also ask you what you eat, if you are happy with life, your lifestyle habits, family history, what medications or supplements you are taking etc.
Then we collect objective information such as your vital signs. You also get a pulse and iris analysis. Certain points in the eye and wrist can give some insight to the health of some organ systems. Next, we discuss your individualized health optimization plan and you leave with a printout of instructions to take home.
In office BIA testing (Bio Impedance Analysis) may be run to determine your body's metabolism and general cellular function. In office Genotype testing is available to further individualize your care. Other laboratory tests such as food allergy, blood type, heavy metal toxicity, neurotransmitters, reproductive hormones, cortisol, intestinal function, and genetic polymorphism tests may be ordered. Some visits may consist of bodywork such as visceral manipulation.
HOW ARE NATUROPATHIC DOCTORS CERTIFIED?
A naturopathic doctor attends four years of medical school after obtaining a bachelor or masters degree that includes pre-med courses. The first two years of Naturopathic Medical School consists of basic science courses such as: anatomy, physiology, embryology, biochemistry, physical clinical diagnosis, pathology, microbiology etc. This training is very similar to what an MD would receive. The final two years of Naturopathic Medical School differs from conventional medical school in that natural modalities are introduced in classes such as gastroenterology, pediatrics, immunology, endocrinology, rheumatology, neurology, family medicine etc. Some of the natural modalities include, nutrition, herbs, supplements, physical medicine, at home remedies, epigenetic therapy, homeopathy, flower essences, lifestyle counseling etc.
A licensed Naturopathic Doctor graduating from an accredited medical school must take national board exams. A one-day basic science board exam is administered after the second year of medical school and a three-day clinical board exam is administered following receipt of the ND degree. An ND must also pass an OSCE exam, Objective Structured Clinical Examination.
14 of the USA states license Naturopathic Doctors as primary care physicians. Currently, Massachusetts is not one of these states. To participate in licensing efforts in the state of MA, see http://www.msnd.org. NDs that completed their board exams practicing in unlicensed states would usually hold a license to practice in another state. NDs practicing in unlicensed states will have limited scopes of practice and will not perform minor surgery, administer immunizations or prescribe prescription drugs for example. Be sure to check with your ND that they hold a license to practice, and have not revived training from non-accredited colleges. http://www.aanmc.org/naturopathic-medicine.php
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