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Naturopathic Medicine

What is a naturopathic Doctor

There are many people who claim to practice Naturopathic Medicine but only those who are ND (or NMD) graduates of a four year residential medical school (like Bastyr College, National College or Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine) are allowed to practice Naturopathic Medicine in licensed states. See the Natural Medicine Now and Council on Naturopathic Medical Education web sites for more information on schools and accreditation. To find a qualified ND in your area visit The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians.

ND's (or NMD's, same thing) are considered family or general practice primary care doctors. In some states like Arizona they are considered physicians and have the broadest scope of practice of any state, at this time. In California, at the time of this writing, they can only call themselves doctors and not physicians

Naturopathic Medicine and doctors are not to be confused with Naturopathy or Naturopaths (also ND's but not licensed). Naturopathy does not include pharmaceuticals. It uses only "nature cure" practices to help people heal. See the Naturopathy pages for more on Natural Healing.

Naturopathic Principles

The modalities that a Naturopathic doctor works with may include: clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathic medicine, physical medicine, Oriental medicine or TCM (depending on state licensing), lifestyle counseling and stress management, natural childbirth (with additional training), and minor surgery. These modalities will vary depending on particular state licensing and/or the school graduated from. Other Naturopathic doctors may choose to limit their healing modalities and/or add other skills such as mesotherapy.

Naturopathic physicians follow six principles that guide their practice of medicine:

primum non nocere (first do no harm)
Naturopathic medicine uses therapies that are safe and effective.

vis medicatrix naturae (the healing power of nature)
The use of non-toxic therapies to facilitate the bodies innate ability to restore health.

tolle causam (discover and treat the cause, not just the effect)
Instead of just suppressing the symptoms, a Naturopathic physician looks for and treats the root cause of illness.

tolle totum ( treat the whole person)
Treatment plans are customized to the individual needs of each person

docere (the physician as teacher)
The physician seeks to empower and educate each patient to be responsible for their own health.

Morbus impedo ( Prevention is the best cure)
A Naturopathic physician helps the patient to prevent illness

 

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