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Frequently Asked Questions
1. How does naturopathic medicine work?
Naturopathic medicine supports and promotes the body's natural healing process, leading to a person's highest state of wellness. By addressing the causes of disease, and individualizing treatment that integrates the healing powers of body, mind and spirit, health can be restored, optimized, and maintained.
2. What is the difference between naturopathy and homeopathy?
Naturopathy encompasses the entire spectrum of natural medicine, of which homeopathy is just one part. Homeopathy is a system which uses extremely small doses of natural substances to stimulate the body's own ability to heal, and thus is based on many of the same principles as naturopathy - treating the cause, treating the whole person, doing no harm, and using the healing power of nature. Homeopathy is part of the foundation of naturopathic medicine, yet it may be taught and practised just by itself and by health care providers who are not naturopaths.
3. Does naturopathic medicine work effectively?
Naturopathic medicine has its own unique body of knowledge, evolved and refined through experience for centuries. It also incorporates scientific advances from medical disciplines throughout the world. Many of the individual therapies used in naturopathic medical practice have been scientifically validated, especially in the areas of clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathy, acupuncture and manipulation. The trend is that those naturopathic methods which are tested in well-designed studies are validated. Research is presently being conducted on the effectiveness of the whole system of naturopathic medicine when it is applied to patients with certain conditions.
4. Is naturopathic medicine safe?
Yes. The safety record for genuine naturopaths is excellent. Naturopaths can purchase malpractise insurance at extremely low rates. As indicated by such rates, the chance of being injured through malpractise is low. Naturopaths are experts in the safe use of natural therapies.
5. Who can use naturopathic treatments safely?
Pregnant women, newborns, and all phases of life up to geriatric care. Terminally ill persons too can benefit safely from naturopathic medicine.
6. How is naturopathic medicine different from conventional medicine?
The main difference is in philosophical approach. Naturopaths treat patients by restoring overall health and are more concerned with finding the underlying cause of a condition and applying treatments that work in alliance with the natural healing mechanisms of the body. Naturopathic treatments result less frequently in adverse side effects, or in the chronic conditions that can arise when the cause of disease is left untreated. Naturopaths typically spend more time with patients, taking a more comprehensive approach.
7. How can naturopathic medicine by blended with conventional medicine?
Although treatment approaches may differ, they are not mutually exclusive. Many patients are under the care of both a conventional doctor and a naturopath, utilizing the strengths and minimizing the limitation of each approach. In an ideal world, patients would always be able to access the best of both systems. Naturopathic medicine has effective treatment for many problems that conventional medicine often fails to cure such as asthma, arthritis, migraines, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Recently, conventional medicine has incorporated some naturopathic approaches in the areas of nutrition, diet, and exercise therapy.
8. Are naturopaths opposed to drugs and major surgery?
No. Naturopaths are not opposed to these approaches when they are necessary and make referrals for such treatment when appropriate.
9. Are naturopathic visits covered by the health funds?
Yes. Most health funds cover a portion of your visit. Please contact your provider for details.
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