Naturopathic Medicine, was first popularized by Benedict Lust in the late 1800s. Lust was a German physician and fell ill, returning to Germany and participating in various natural treatments such as hydrotherapy, herbal medicine, and homeopathy. These treatments would later become the basis to which he developed western Naturopathy.
Naturopathy, or Nature Cure, uses modalities that occur with nature such as those that use air, water, herbs, etc. Traditional Naturopaths stay true to these naturopathic principals, while also collaborating with allopathic medical doctors, who manage patient’s pharmacological or surgical needs. Traditional Naturopaths do not believe that they are qualified nor feel compelled to address patient’s allopathic medical needs for pharmaceuticals or surgeries instead they work to optimize the patients health and becoming a patient’s healthcare advocate, therefore supporting the bodies ability to heals itself, while educating the patient on their healthcare responsibilities. With a high level of patient responsibility and accountability to natural health, medications can be reduced and possible surgeries prevented. It is vital to stay proactive with one’s health to prevent disease, rather than work to heal the body from disease development. Typically the process of healing after a disease has been developed can be an argious and intensive process.
Naturopathic Doctors use 6 holistic principals when working with their patients. All of these principals are exercised in our Virginia Beach Health Clinic, Holistic Family Practice.
THE HEALING POWER OF NATURE (VIS MEDICATRIX NATURAE)
It is nature that guides our process of healing, which establishes, maintains, and restores health. Naturopathic medicine looks to work in unity with nature and it’s innate intelligence. The role of a naturopath is to support, facilitate, and augment the healing process by identifying and removing any obstacles that inhibit the bodies ability to heal, by supporting internal as well as the external environment. They also teach their patients to live with nature and natural living instead of being out of sync with nature.
IDENTIFY AND TREAT THE CAUSES (TOLLE CAUSAM)
Illness is not just a collection of symptoms. There is an identifiable cause to which the bodies health breaks down. It is the job of a naturopathic doctor to become a medical detective and understand the underlying cause of illness, instead of just eliminating or suppressing symptoms. Symptoms are merely viewed as the bodies expression of homeostasis or balance. Naturopaths employ various treatments in order to uncover the causes of disease such as diagnostic techniques and functional medicine diagnostics.
TREAT THE WHOLE PERSON (TOLLE TOTUM)
Naturopaths believe and understand that health is not just a physical experience, but rather a result of complex structure of spiritual, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social, and physical factors. Naturopaths look to bring the body, mind, and spirit into total balance recognizing the harmonious relationships all aspects of self have to each other. This multifaceted relationship either develops health or disease, naturopaths address all aspects, intuitively to help others to recognize their own healing powers and abilities.
DOCTOR AS TEACHER (DOCERE)
Doctor in latin means teacher, therefore, naturopaths work to teach their patients how to be healthy through personal responsibility, education, motivation, as well as inspiration. It is thought if a patient understands what creates health and what creates disease, as well as the differences then they will be more empowered, therefore more complaint with care. We strive to allow patients to be a part of that process, educating them on how their body works and where breakdowns may occur in their health.
Naturopathy studies the processes of disease, however are more focused on how to re-balance the body into health. Disease is seen merely as an imbalance in the system. Prevention of disease, and achievement of optimal health are the goals of naturopathic practice. In our Virginia Beach health clinic, the main objective is to stabilize the patient to a state of health and build upon health from the position of stabilization. As such, naturopathic doctors assess risk factors, genetic predisposition, and susceptibility to disease development, working to make appropriate interventions as necessary to assist the patient in healing. We promote a patients self responsibility in this process.
Naturopathic Doctors employ various modalities into practice in order to achieve optimal health. Dr Steele, Naturopathic Doctor, uses the following modalities in her Virginia Beach Health Clinic, including but not limited to, in order to assist patients in their healing.
• Physical exam (including general, musculoskeletal, EENT, heart and lung, orthopedic and neurological assessments)
• Common diagnostic procedures (including functional medicine virginia beach laboratory evaluation of blood, urine, stool, saliva as well as applied kinesiology or muscle testing)
• Soft tissue and osseous manipulation (including manual therapy, strain-counterstrain, naturopathic/osseous manipulation of spine and extremities)
• Dietary advice and therapeutic nutrition (including the use of foods, diet plans, nutritional supplements, meal preparation/ meal planning)
• Botanical/herbal medicines, recommending of various therapeutic substances including plant, mineral, and animal materials. Substances may be given in the form of teas, pills, creams, powders, tinctures which may contain alcohol, suppositories, topical creams, pastes, plasters, washes, or other forms. Patients with specific dietary, religious, or lifestyle limitations should inform Dr Steele, so she can make necessary adjustments.
• Neutraceuticals (which are pharmaceutical grade supplements), that have been third party independently tested and verified for efficacy
• Homeopathic remedies (highly diluted quantities of naturally occurring substances)
• Hydrotherapy (use of hot and cold water, may include transcutaneous electrode stimulation, steam, sauna, etc)
• Counseling (including but not limited to visualization, hypnotherapy, meditation, NLP for behavioral strategies)
• Over-the-counter and prescription medications (including only the relationship to biochemistry and the interaction between natural substances and currently prescribed medications)
• Recommendations for detoxification services including but not limited to infrared dry sauna, ionic foot detoxification, in addition to internal detox treatments as recommended based off of functional medicine virginia beach laboratory findings
Dr Steele, Naturopathic Doctor, has been working with patients in natural healthcare for the last 15 years, since 2001, when she began as a manual therapists practicing massage therapy. Over the course of her 15 years she has completed numerous training’s to help hone her skills in the area of natural healthcare. She is dedicated to assisting her patients to live a natural health lifestyle. She is passionate about her Virginia Beach Health Clinic, Holistic Family Practice and enjoys the challenge of discovering causes of complicated disease processes. She holds two doctorate degrees, one in natural medicine and one in naturopathic medicine with a subspecialty in Functional Medicine. She is currently completing her coursework towards a PHD in mind-body medicine and enjoys studying human behavior and biochemistry. She is currently accepting new patients in her concierge natural healthcare practice.