Naturopathic Medicine is simply good medicine that uses the body’s ability to heal itself to achieve health and wellness by using natural, non-toxic therapies. Naturopathic physicians are primary care physicians that are trained to diagnose and treat a wide variety of diseases with natural therapeutics. Treatment plans are developed and adapted to each individual patient with an emphasis on treating the whole person. Therapies that I use regularly include:
- Craniosacral Therapy
- Energy Medicine
- Flower Essences
- Clinical Nutrition
- Botanical Medicine (Herbal Medicine)
The Principles of Naturopathic Medicine is the foundation for understanding that I use when I evaluate patients and develop a treatment plan.
- Nature is the force that can truly heal. The body heals itself all the time. As a physician, I want to listen to the body to understand why it is doing what it is doing and give it what it needs to start the healing process.
- Treat the cause of the problem. By identifying what the real cause of the disease is, I can support the body to heal rather than just cover up symptoms of the disease.
- Do no harm. Do not hurt the patient with a treatment. What I prescribe must bring health to the whole person. I want to minimize side effects and work with the individual’s self-healing process to achieve health and wellness.
- Doctors are teachers. I educate patients about their bodies and how to support their own healing process.
- Treat the whole person. Every aspect of a person’s life influences their physical health. Sometimes the cause of a disease is not just physical. The cause of disease can be environmental, emotional, mental, social, genetic, or spiritual. By working with the whole person, I treat the real cause of the problem and allow nature to do its healing work.
Education, Clinical Training, and Licensing of Naturopathic Physicians
I graduated with my Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (N.D.) from the Natural College of Natural Medicine in Portland Oregon. All licensed Naturopathic Doctors receive their training at a four-year, graduate level naturopathic medical school with admission requirements comparable to those of traditional (MD) medical schools. The naturopathic program has extensive training in basic sciences, disease pathology, laboratory testing, and physical exams. Extensive clinical and classroom education trained me to use natural therapies to treat disease. To do this, I learned various forms of energy medicine, physical medicine, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, botanical medicine, and clinical nutrition.
Naturopathic Physicians, as primary care physicians do physical exams, order laboratory tests and take medical histories just like the primary care physician you are familiar with. The difference is that Naturopathic Doctors use natural therapeutics to treat disease instead of pharmaceutical drugs. Because Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) are using western-based medical diagnostic methods, NDs work well with medical doctors (MDs) and can refer patients to medical specialists when necessary for diagnosis and treatment.
Naturopathic Doctors are licensed in Oregon, which allows NDs to diagnose and treat disease in this state. I can work with other healthcare practitioners, make referrals, order laboratory tests, and prescribe certain pharmaceutical drugs. Each state that is licensed has its own laws governing the scope of practice for NDs. I have met all of the state requirements and have a current license to practice medicine in the state of Oregon. Requirements for licensing include the following:
- Graduation from an accredited four year, residential naturopathic medical school
- Passage of extensive postdoctoral board examinations (e.g., NPLEX)
- Fulfillment of state-mandated continuing education requirements