This is the final day of blogs for Naturopathic Medicine Week 2016! Thanks to naturopathic medical student, Andriana Setnik, who has collaborated with me to answer all of your important questions about naturopathic medicine.
What are some of the therapies used by naturopathic doctors?
Some of the therapies used by naturopathic medicine include, clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, hydrotherapy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, homeopathy, lifestyle counseling, bodywork, and more. Here is a brief summary of some commonly used therapies in naturopathic practice:
Clinical nutrition involves the understanding of the relationship between nutrition, health, and disease. Naturopathic doctors critically evaluate and apply research in nutrition to create individualized diet and lifestyle based treatment plans for prevention and the treatment of acute and chronic disease. Naturopathic doctors have an understanding of therapeutic dosages and adverse effects of vitamins and minerals, allowing for the safe and effective management of disease. We can also evaluate the need for food sensitivity testing, eliminate diets, and other custom diets for specific disease states.
Botanical medicine is the use of herbs of various preparations, including tinctures and teas, for the treatment of disease. Naturopathic doctors have an understanding of herbs based on their specific effects in disease. Naturopathic doctors also know when to avoid using herbs, how herbs may interact with some of your current therapies (including pharmaceuticals) and the overall safety of herbal remedies. Naturopathic doctors integrate the traditional uses of plants with modern scientific knowledge on their use in clinical practice.
Hydrotherapy is the use of water for therapeutic purposes. Alternating hot and cold showers, sauna, warming sock treatments, and constitutional hydrotherapy are some of many variations of hydrotherapy treatments. Hydrotherapy can be indicated in many conditions ranging from supportive treatment of your cold and flu to helping relieve muscle aches and tension.
Traditional Chinese Medicine
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) involves a holistic approach to establishing harmony and balance in the mind and body. Naturopathic doctors have an understanding of the fundamentals of Traditional Chinese Medicine including concepts of harmony and dynamic balance (yin and yang) and Qi (life force). TCM therapies include acupuncture, herbal medicine and dietary therapy. TCM can be used as a therapy for back pain, insomnia, infertility, migraines, menopause, PMS, and much more.
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