Saturday, September 22, 2012

Holistic Medicine and Holistic Doctors

Many people feel they are at the point where going to a Western trained (allopathic) doctor has lead to frustration or no results in improving their level of health and vitality. Working with a holistic medical doctor can be a very rewarding experience and likely to be a more integrated and comprehensive approach then just a General Practitioner. Many holistic doctors are classically trained with an MD from an accedited medical institution but have additional training in pain management, herbal supplements, acupuncture, kinesiology and genetic testing. Most holistic doctor have a few specialties and use an integrated approach.
When you are facing an acute immediately life threatening trauma such as a bullet or heart attack then just going to an emergency room with ER doctors is going to be the wisest and most prudent decision but for on-going chronic health conditions such as auto-immune disorders, digestive issues, allergies, skin conditions, chronic pain and obesity then depending on your outlook and level of insurance, considering a Natural Medicine Doctor which are referred to as many different titles such Naturopath, Integrated Medicine or Holistic Health Practitioner.
There are many factors to consider when searching for a suitable practitioner. The first is one to consider is has the practitioner worked with conditions like yours before. Questions to ask a potential Holistic Medical Doctor are: What kinds of conditions do you treat? What conditions do you treat the most? What kinds of strategies do you use? Do you take insurance? Are you in-network or out--of-network? What if my health conditions don't progress? How confident are you that you can help me with my health goals? How much do most of your clients need to spend on supplements or additional lab testing?
Most holistic doctors will examine your eating habits, levels of exercise, levels of stress and what kind of work they do. If the doctor does not ask examine these issues in your life then they probably are not truly an Integrated Doctor. If the doctor does not spend more time with you then a typical doctor visit then it also is probably not a great fit if you are truly looking for a holistic approach. A Holistic Medicine Doctor will likely spend more time with you on an initial visit. The typical amount of time for a first visit is one hour but many will spend two hours with you.
Be wary of the doctor that treat every condition and all kinds of people. If you are suffering from low back pain then seek out a doctor that specializes in chronic pain. If you are suffering from a a thryoid condition then seek out a doctor that specializes in auto-immune disorders. You want don't want a generalist you want a specialist.
You often will pay more or out--of-pocket for this kind of care. Depending on the kind of health insurance and deductibles you have your-co-pays might be similar if you had just gone to an Family Medicine Doctor.
Whatever route you take, you should plan on being very pro-active and self-educated while taking on your health challenges. With Webmd, YouTube and so many other online portals you can learn so much about different strategies for your own health and wellness. Be prepared to ask intelligent questions and be familiar with some of the strategies they might recommend such as changing certain foods you eat and changing your lifestyle.

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