What is naturopathic medicine?
Naturopathic medicine is a division of primary health care that focuses on prevention, and supporting your body's innate ability to heal itself. Our naturopathic principles remind us to look for what is causing your condition so you get longer lasting results. We use a complete health assessment, including physical exam, laboratory testing, and interpretation to make a diagnosis, and we recommend treatments on a scale from the least invasive to most invasive where appropriate.
What kind of education do naturopathic doctors have?
All naturopathic physicians require an undergraduate degree in order to be accepted into the naturopathic medical program, making the total minimum duration of post secondary education 7 years. The naturopathic program is 4 years in length, and covers similar material to other health care professions, such as anatomy, physiology, pathology, and differential diagnosis. Where we differ is in the variety of treatment options we are educated in. Naturopathic physicians are educated in nutrition and botanical medicine, physical medicine and chiropractic manipulation, pharmacology, counseling, and various other elective subjects such as intravenous therapies and other injection therapies. For a more in-depth comparison of educational hours across health professions, click here.
How are naturopathic physicians regulated?
Why might I receive different testing or treatment options if I go to a different ND?
This is a common scenario in all areas of health care. As naturopathic physicians, we have a large scope of practice, and different physicians will gravitate towards the theories and techniques that that they excel in. This is not to say that any technique is more or less effective than another, it is just a different way of looking at the issue. The same is true if you were to go to different MDs for your complaint, you may get different answers. As with any health care professional, it is important that you find someone who resonates with you and your beliefs. If you aren't comfortable with the diagnosis or assessment methods, get a second opinion. Find someone you feel you can trust, and who is dedicated to working together with you.