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In last week’s blog I created a list of the practitioners that can be considered holistic or alternative. This was not an exhaustive list. It was just a list that my patients tend to have questions about or have seen for support of their health conditions.
Now that we have a list of practitioners the question becomes, who is best to go to support your health needs. I thought I would give examples of how I refer patients to each of these practitioners. It is not the only way to use the practitioner but it can be used as a starting point if you are unfamiliar with some of the practitioners.
Naturopathic Physician (ND)
My disclaimer is that I am a naturopathic physician, so I think this is the most wonderful field of medicine. When people think about holistic doctors, I believe that they are really thinking about naturopathic physicians.
We are trained to use diet, nutrition, herbal medicine, physical medicine, counseling and lifestyle issues as the first line of therapy for patients. We are also trained in pharmaceutics and surgery when required. We have training to create the best of both worlds conventional and alternative medicines.
If you decide to seek out a naturopathic physicians make sure that they have graduated from an accredited naturopathic school and NOT a mail order school. There is a huge difference in training between the two educations!
Medical Doctors that use alternative medicine
There is no specific training that medical doctors have in learning alternative medicine. There are some incredible medical doctors that have integrated their medical training with alternative medicines. There are also many medical doctors that do not know anything about alternative medicine and will always say it is dangerous to use in combination to conventional treatments.
If you want to use alternative treatments it is important to find a doctor that is open to alternative medicine. It can be dangerous, yes, dangerous to use alternative medicine and not share the medicines or treatments with your doctor because you don’t think they will approve.
Osteopathic Physicians (DO)