What is a Naturopathic Doctor?

Apr 13, 2018

Time and time again we hear (and also experience) frustration with the current health care system: my doctor takes only 10 minutes with me, I am just another number, there is no solution other than prescription medicine for my problem… Oftentimes we at The Still Point get cases that mainstream medicine can’t solve. Acupuncture, Energy Work, even our Holistic Skin Care services are known to solve mysteries western medicine can’t fix. Now we have yet another modality, Naturopathic Medicine, in our offerings to get, and keep, you well.

A Naturopathic doctor (ND) is a primary care doctor who assesses the whole health of a person, rather than the individual parts, taking in mind various aspects of a person’s health including the mind, body, and social / relationship factors which often affect the state of health.

The practice of Naturopathic medicine combines modern laboratory assessment, specialty laboratory testing, physical examination, and traditional health assessment such as the state of health through the eyes (iridology), tounge, pulse, and hair.

A Naturopathic doctor has a large tool kit available to address health problems from multiple angles. These therapeutic methods include: nutritional and dietary medicine, botanical (herbal medicine), hygiene interventions, homeopathy, acupuncture, naturopathic physical medicine, public health education, and minor surgery.

Naturopathic medicine is based on the following principles, which contribute to the way we approach each patient and the way we choose our treatment protocol:  

  1. The healing power of nature (Vis Medicatrix Naturae): The body has an innate ability to heal itself. All we must do is find the obstacle that is stopping it from doing so, and supply it with what it needs to begin its healing process.
  2. Treat the cause (Tolle Causam): Rather than only dealing with the symptoms, ND’s seek to treat the cause of the illness.
  3. First do no harm (Primum Non Nocere): ND’s seek to use methods and medicines that minimize the risk of harmful side effects by using the smallest necessary dose to treat gently and effectively.
  4. Doctor as Teacher (Docere): As Doctors, our first mission is to educate and empower patients to live healthy lives, and maximize the benefits of mindful – holistic living.
  5. Treat the Whole person: Rather than treating each individual part, a Naturopathic doctor understands the importance of treating the person as a whole. Therefore an ND will take into account the mental, emotional, physical, genetic, social, environmental, and spiritual aspects of health.
  6. Prevention: Naturopathic doctors will assess risk factors that can affect your health, and will guide their patients through appropriate therapeutic methods to prevent illness.

Come meet Dr. Hanna Schmittat on Sunday, April 22 for a free talk in Takoma Park about what exactly IS naturopathic medicine. Please RSVP since spots are limited! She’s also offering free 10-minute consultations for new patients (by phone or in person).

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