Naturopathic medicine is a field of medicine that focuses on prevention, optimizing health while utilizing treatments which support the human body’s own power to heal. Naturopathic doctors training at a four year accredited program that includes two years of didactic work and two years of clinical work, similar to conventional medical training.
In Washington state, naturopathic physicians can be primary care physicians. In addition to learning evidence based medicine and standards of care, naturopathic physicians are also trained in botanical medicine, nutrition, counseling, physical medicine, nutraceuticals, and pharmaceuticals.
Principles of Naturopathic Medicine
Primum Non Nocere – First Do No Harm
This principle is also seen in allopathic medicine. In naturopathy, doing no harm means to diagnose and treat patients in such a way that poses minimal risk to the patient, usually by using the least force of intervention and supporting the body’s natural ability to heal itself. Naturopathic doctors avoid harmful suppression of symptoms whenever possible.
Tolle Totum – Treat the Whole
Naturopathic medicine does not focus only on physical aspects of health but also considers each individual’s mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social and spiritual health as important aspects of overall health.
Vis Medicatrix Naturae – Healing Power of Nature
Naturopathic physicians recognize the Vis, the body’s natural ability for healing. This principle is unique to naturopathic medicine. The goal of the physician is to support their patients' natural processes by determining what obstacles are preventing health and helping the patient remove these obstacles.
Preventare – Prevention
Naturopathic physicians assess a patient’s susceptibility and risk factors and take appropriate steps to support disease prevention.
Tolle Causum – Treat the Cause
Rather than only eliminating or suppressing symptoms, naturopathic doctors aim to determine the cause of those symptoms. In determining and removing the underlying causes to a patient’s symptoms, naturopaths are supporting the body’s innate ability to heal.
Docere – Doctor as Teacher
The relationship between doctor and patient is vital to a patient’s path to health and wellness. Not only are naturopathic physicians diagnosticians and doctors but they are also teachers. By educating patients, naturopathic physicians are encouraging and empowering their patients to be accountable for their own health and wellness.
Naturopathic Primary Care
We are able to provide annual screening and preventative exams for both men and women. As your primary care provider, we are able to work seamlessly with the rest of your healthcare team and coordinate the proper referrals needed to help you reach your health goals.
The ND Toolbox