Naturopathic Medicine 101: Treat the Cause
We can all agree that to restore health should be the goal of all treatments, regardless of the treatment used.
In fact, many patients come with the hopes of feeling better and taking less medication - natural or prescription. Using natural medicine, Naturopathic Doctors, look at restoring health by treating the cause of illness.
First, (usually during the first visit) the various factors which determine health need to be explored with you, the patient and assessed.
What are some of these factors which are the foundation of health?
I approach this in the following order of importance.
The assessment is not a judgement - but rather an on-going dialogue between us about
to what extent the above factors either contributing to, or undermining your health.
This is key to understanding both your illness and your treatment outcome.
At any point in your health journey a good question to ask yourself is:
To what extent does my lifestyle impact my health?
Lifestyle is ultimately about daily choices and decisions we make about what to eat and drink, what our priorities are, who we spend time with, how much rest we allow ourselves to take.
We can control these choices, even though at times we may not believe we can.
A deeper look brings us to the next question:
To what extent am I willing and able to make choices which make my health a priority?
Do I feel supported in these choices?
Unless these factors are assessed, any treatment and it's effect will be reduced - proportionately to the degree to which they interfere with health. For example, if a person is suffering from chronic stress - and has a habit of continuously taking on too many commitments, then a herbal stress support formula - the very best prescribed by the best Naturopathic Doctor, will have a relatively small impact since the tendency to over-commit and not rest undermines the treatment. Without judgement or blame, this is where I as a Naturopathic Doctor work with you. This illustrates one principle of Naturopathic Treatment which is to treat the cause by removing obstacles to cure.
Change is not always easy, the first step is to recognize the relationship between what we do and who we become - and understand how it is an on-going cycle which can impact our health over time.
My treatments focus on helping the body and supporting you in making these changes in a step by step manner so you can move towards health and wholeness.
Tune in next week for Doctor as Teacher - the second principle of Naturopathic Medicine, and find out why patient education is essential for successful treatment outcomes.
Dr. Angeli Chitale ND