Naturopathic Medicine has a variety of different healing modalities to choose from and each practitioner (N.D.) has their own style and preference for treatments, as well as, individualizing each treatment for each patient dependent on their state of health and symptom presentation.
Botanical Medicine is a general term for using plants for the healing properties they possess. Before modern medicine and the ability to isolate and synthesize specific molecules to use as targeted drugs, all medicines were derived from the earth, especially from plants. My approach to utilizing plants as medicine combines knowledge from traditional western herbalism, medical herbalism, Chinese herbalism and Ayurvedic herbalism.
Traditional Chinese Medicine & Acupuncture
Traditional Chinese Medicine is very different from our western medical understandings of the body. This system of medicine is based on the understanding that the body, mind and spirit is a system of energy and thus cannot be separated from one another. The body is viewed as having a system of meridians (pathways) and that energy flows along these meridians, through individual organs and throughout the body. Disease manifests when energy flow is disrupted or altered or when the body is attacked by pathogenic factors. By utilizing diet, herbs, and acupuncture one is able to restore the proper flow of energy throughout the body, stimulate healing and bring balance back to the body to improve health.
Nutrition should be the primary focus of any system of medicine. Without proper nutrition the body will be lacking in essential vitamins, minerals, enzymes and a variety of other essential components needed for physiological functioning. Unfortunately, many of the public are unaware how unhealthy their diets are and what they are lacking in nutrition. The media, marketing and convenience of certain food choices have lead our society to believe they are eating just fine when this is far from the truth. Along with dietary advice and education, clinical nutrition fills in the gaps with supplementation to ensure adequate nutrient levels are being achieved to optimize health, no matter what the diet looks like.
Lifestyle Counseling and Mind-Body Medicine
Lifestyle counseling and mind-body medicine are essential components of health that need to be addressed in the clinical setting. Our thoughts and emotions are directly related to the health of our bodies and many illnesses can arise in the body as a direct consequence of negative emotions or thoughts that are repressed or not being properly expressed or dealt with. As well, poor lifestyle choices directly affect the health of our body, mind and spirit. By addressing how the choices we make affect us, unexpressed or improperly expressed emotions, how we relate to the world and to others, behavioral patterns and reactions, as well as, life goals and aspirations, we can then develop ways to make better choices, minimize stress reactions, and live a more balanced, healthier, happier life.
Homeopathic Medicine is a system of medicine that views the body as having a vital force (life energy) and that illness occurs when this vital force has been weakened and the stronger vital force of an illness or disease has taken hold in the body. By taking a minute dose of a remedy whose characteristic features resemble the presenting symptom picture (set of symptoms) of the disease, the energy of that remedy will be enough to subtly strengthen the vital force of the patient, which can bring them to a stronger state in order to push out the illness or disease. By using minute doses that have been diluted through serial dilutions, we move farther away from a material substance and more towards the energetic imprint of the original substance.
Water therapy has been used since ancient times for healing. Whether simple cleansing of the skin, using ice to soothe inflammation and muscle strain, or using heat to improve circulation, water possesses many healing attributes, as well as, nourishing every cell in our body. Water therapy can improve immune function and resistance to infection, can reduce fever and duration of infection or illness, and bring about a calming affect on the mind and body. Patients used to spend weeks in sanitariums (water therapy centers) where they would receive specific diets and daily water cure treatments to improve their health or get over some illness.