Principles of Naturopathic Medicine

First, Do No Harm

The Naturopathic physician takes an oath to do no harm while assessing & treating patients. At times, the correct action or treatment, is no treatment at first while attempting to identify the cause of the disease. After identifying the cause, it's the physicians duty to utilize the most natural, least invasive, & least toxic therapies before moving up the therapeutic order. 

The Healing Power of Nature

Naturopathic physicians recognize & value the body's innate wisdom & ability to heal itself. This self-healing process is ordered & intelligent. The physicians job is to be a catalyst & encourage the body's natural healing process through the least invasive therapies.

Identify and Treat the Cause

Naturopathic physicians understand that symptoms are the body's way to signal that the body's defenses are heightened and it's the physicians job to correctly interpret the symptoms to identify & treat the underlying cause of the disease, rather than suppress symptoms. 

Treat the Whole Person

A human being's health is complex and involves many aspects, including physical, mental, emotional, environmental, social, genetic, & spiritual health. Naturopathic physicians view patients as a sum of all the part, or an integrated whole and attempts to treat them as such by addressing all aspects of their health. 

Doctor as Teacher

Personally, this principle is perhaps the most important. It is the physicians job to educate their patient on all aspects of their care, including their diagnosis, effective treatment options, accurate timelines for treatment, proper follow-up, & prognosis. When patients are educated about their care and their health, they become empowered to make educated decisions about their care. 

Prevention

This is where Naturopathic physicians shine. Naturopaths emphasize the prevention of disease by assessing several risk factors, such as personal health history, family history, susceptibility to diseases, etc. Through understanding these factors, the physician can help make appropriate interventions in partnership with their patients to prevent illness.

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The Therapeutic Order

Also known as the hierarchy of healing, this is the unifying theory of Naturopathic Medicine. This hierarchy governs naturopathic clinic decision-making. It begins by offering minimally invasive recommendations, such as nutrition, hydration, exercise, & sleep, and ends with more aggressive, invasive modalities.