A great infographic gives a decent representation of what to expect when you have a visit with a Naturopathic Doctor.
I love being a Naturopathic Doctor as it allows me to spend time with my patients, understand their story/medical history, and get to know them as a person rather than just a list of symptoms. This then allows us to work together, patient and doctor, to create an individualized treatment plan. These plans, from time to time, change as the patient changes since their goals and health change. As a Naturopathic Doctor, my focus is getting to the root cause of the disease while using the least invasive treatments possible to aid the body in restoring health. It is our job as the doctor to support the innate healing ability of the body, and then get out of the way as the body heals itself.
I came across this wonderful infographic, from the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges (AANMC), of what to expect when you see a Naturopathic Doctor. It sums up what I do quite well, and why we ask so many questions.
Before an initial appointment, I ask my patients to fill out their intake packet which includes an 11 page health history form. This form also includes information on your current health goals, and your past medical, family, mental, and emotional history. This includes your social history as well as a diet diary. This information gives me a snapshot of where our conversation needs to go so that I can lay out your treatment plan.
A physical exam is also done at the initial appointment as our physical bodies can tell us just as much information as any lab work or talking. Often times physical exams are abbreviated during the visit to a traditionally western, allopathic doctor’s office where the focus is only on the immediate concern. For example, you go into their office for a cough so the doctor just looks at your nose, throat, and then listens to your lungs; sometimes only your lungs. This is not the Naturopathic way, in comparison, where the whole of the body is taken in for the bigger picture. The human body is a road map to what is going on physically, emotionally, and spiritually with a person. It takes time to know a patient to then be able to read them physically.
Source & Image: AANMC