Naturopathy is a treatment system that utilizes natural resources to help the body heal itself. Hippocrates. The Greek father of medicine, himself utilized naturopathic medicine and principles in his healthcare system. He used fasting, diet, exercise and physical techniques in his treatments to strengthen the body, and aid it to fight and cure illness. He used them in such a way that by combining various disciplines, the improvement in the vitality of his patients would itself start the healing process.
It should be pointed out that a naturopath whilst knowledgeable about disease and its pathophysiology, do not directly treat the illness. The focus of the naturopath is more on the patient, and the patient’s vitality. Naturopaths believe that by enhancing the vitality of their patients the healing process is supported and strengthened, thus the patient is better equipped to fight their illness.
Today naturopathic physicians (ND`s) are seen as the general practitioners of natural medicine, this is due to their broad understanding of human health. Naturopaths undertake up to 5 years of full time study including a one-year clinical internship. The subjects studied include. Nutritional medicine, evidence based herbal medicine, homoeopathy, remedial therapy, iridology, counselling, Bach medicine and medical sciences. After graduating, a naturopathic physician may choose to specialize in areas such as dark field microscopy (live blood analysis), fertility management or in the area of sports and remedial therapies.
Your practitioner will take a thorough holistic medical history and examine your presenting symptoms in great detail physical examination is also performed. Various screening tools may also be used in order to give your practitioner a better understanding of your overall health, function and vitality. The types of screening tools used may include live blood cell analysis (LBA), biofeedback analysis and iris diagnosis.
Once your practitioner has an overall view of your health a protocol is developed. Your program may involve a bowel or liver detoxification. Dietary and lifestyle changes may also be implemented. Your practitioner may use evidenced based herbs, vitamins, homoeopathic medicines, and amino acids and may use soft tissue manipulation in the treatment protocol.