Naturopathic Medicine

Naturopathic medicine is the treatment of disease through the activation and support of the inherent healing power of the body.  We interpret this to mean that the body's own natural defense system can be supported and stimulated to aid the body in healing itself.  Our approach ecompasses traditional support such as prescription medications and surgery but more often looks to less invasive option with fewer harmful side effects.  We aim to identify, understand and treat the root of the infection and not just the symptoms of disease. 

Six Principles of Naturopathic Medicine


    1. The Healing Power of Nature: The body has the inherent ability to establish, maintain, and restore health. The healing process is ordered and intelligent; nature heals through the response of the life force. The physician's role is to facilitate and augment this process, to identify and remove obstacles to health and recovery, and to support the creation of a healthy internal and external environment.
    1. Identify and Treat the Cause: Illness does not occur without cause. Underlying causes of disease must be discovered and removed or treated before a person can recover completely from illness. Symptoms are expressions of the body's attempt to heal, but are not the cause of disease. Symptoms, therefore, should not be suppressed by treatment. Causes may occur on many levels including physical, biochemical, electromagnetic, mental, emotional, and spiritual. The physician must first evaluate the fundamental, underlying causes of disease on all levels, and then direct treatment at root causes rather than at symptomatic expression.
    1. First Do no Harm: The process of healing includes the generation of symptoms which are, in fact, an expression of the life force attempting to heal itself. Therapeutic actions should be complimentary to and synergistic with this healing process. The physician's actions can support or antagonize the actions of the philosophy of "first do no harm". Therefore, methods designed to suppress symptoms without removing underlying causes are considered harmful and are minimized or avoided completely.
    1. Treat the Whole Person: Health and disease are conditions of the whole organism, which involves a complex interaction of physical, spiritual, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social, and other factors. The physician must treat the whole person by taking all of these factors into account. The harmonious functioning of all aspects of the individual is essential to recovery from and prevention of disease and requires a personalized and comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment.
    1. The Physician as Teacher: Beyond an accurate diagnosis and appropriate prescription, the physician must work to create a healthy and sensitive interpersonal relationship with the patient. A cooperative doctor-patient relationship has inherent therapeutic value in itself. The physician's major role is to educate and encourage the patient to take responsibility for health. The physician is a catalyst for healthful change, empowering and motivating the patient to assume responsibility. It is the patient, not the doctor, who ultimately creates and accomplishes healing. The physician must strive to inspire hope as well as understanding. The physician must also make a commitment to his or her own personal and spiritual development in order to be a good teacher.
    1. Prevention is the Best "Cure:" The ultimate goal of any health care system should be prevention. This is accomplished through education and promotion of positive life-habits that create good health. The physician assesses risk factors and hereditary susceptibility to disease and makes appropriate interventions to avoid further harm and risk to the patient. The emphasis is on building health rather than on fighting disease.

http://www.pandamedicine.com
  1. The healing power of nature. The body has the inherent ability to establish, maintain, and restore health. The healing process is ordered and intelligent; nature heals through the response of the life force. The physician's role is to facilitate and augment this process, to identify and remove obstacles to health and recovery, and to support the creation of a healthy internal and external environment.
  2. Identify and treat the cause. Illness does not occur without cause. Underlying causes of disease must be discovered and removed or treated before a person can recover completely from illness. Symptoms are expressions of the body's attempt to heal, but are not the cause of disease. Symptoms, therefore, should not be suppressed by treatment. Causes may occur on many levels including physical, biochemical, electromagnetic, mental, emotional, and spiritual. The physician must first evaluate the fundamental, underlying causes of disease on all levels, and then direct treatment at root causes rather than at symptomatic expression.

 

  1. First do no harm. The process of healing includes the generation of symptoms which are, in fact, an expression of the life force attempting to heal itself. Therapeutic actions should be complimentary to and synergistic with this healing process. The physician's actions can support or antagonize the actions of the philosophy of "first do no harm". Therefore, methods designed to suppress symptoms without removing underlying causes are considered harmful and are minimized or avoided completely.

 

  1. Treat the whole person. Health and disease are conditions of the whole organism, which involves a complex interaction of physical, spiritual, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social, and other factors. The physician must treat the whole person by taking all of these factors into account. The harmonious functioning of all aspects of the individual is essential to recovery from and prevention of disease and requires a personalized and comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment.

 

  1. The physician as teacher. Beyond an accurate diagnosis and appropriate prescription, the physician must work to create a healthy and sensitive interpersonal relationship with the patient. A cooperative doctor-patient relationship has inherent therapeutic value in itself. The physician's major role is to educate and encourage the patient to take responsibility for health. The physician is a catalyst for healthful change, empowering and motivating the patient to assume responsibility. It is the patient, not the doctor, who ultimately creates and accomplishes healing. The physician must strive to inspire hope as well as understanding. The physician must also make a commitment to his or her own personal and spiritual development in order to be a good teacher.

 

  1. Prevention is the best "cure". The ultimate goal of any health care system should be prevention. This is accomplished through education and promotion of positive life-habits that create good health. The physician assesses risk factors and hereditary susceptibility to disease and makes appropriate interventions to avoid further harm and risk to the patient. The emphasis is on building health rather than on fighting disease.

 

Naturopathic and Medical Doctors

Naturopathic Doctors and Medical Doctors are required to complete four-year degrees programs.  Both doctors are rigorously trained and tested on medical diagnosis, treatment techniques, prescriptions, medications, interpretation of blood tests and medical research to name a few requirments.  Naturopathic Physicians in the state of Oregon, also face the same rigorous standards of medical board testing and continual education requirments by the Oregon Board of Naturopathic Examiners.

 

When considering Naturopaths, it is important to distinguish between those with and without board certification; non-certified naturopaths complete a shorter program of study and do not have to pass medical board exams.

History of Naturopathic Medicine

Naturopathic medicine was founded on the Ayurvedic, Chinese, Native American, European, and Greek medical traditions. Its original and current purpose is to treat individuals holistically through the understanding and combination of various healthcare system approaches.

In the United States, the practice of Naturopathy in its current form began in the early 1900s. Shortly after its conception, the practice spread throughout the nation. Today, there are still numerous Naturopaths throughout Europe and the United States.

In 1956, the National College of Natural Medicine was founded, its prosperity confirmed that the "wonder drug" phenomena had begun to dissipate due to the over prescription of many drugs such as antibiotics, and the possible harmful side-effects they imposed.

Today, there are six colleges in North America dedicated to the education and advancement of Board Certified Naturopathic physicians. Research on alternative treatments and medications are an active part of the colleges' curriculum. Currently, Naturopathic physicians are licensed to diagnose and treat disease in Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, Washington, U.S. Territories: Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands.