Primum Non Nocere
First, Do No Harm
As Naturopathic doctors, we strive to put patient health and safety at the forefront of our minds and our practices. We are dedicated to your safety and wellbeing. Naturopathic Doctors are trained medical practitioners which abide by laws and regulations enforced by the profession and by the province. We utilize practices of medicine which minimize risk of harmful outcomes and side effects.
We are beings with powerful healing ability. Think about the last time you got a cut or a scrape. What did you do? Perhaps you covered it with a bandage, perhaps you left it alone. More often than not, if we keep it clean and dry, we heal! As Naturopathic Doctors, we try to enhance the body's natural healing abilities by creating the right environment and support - just like keeping that wound clean and dry. For all conditions, our bodies are intelligent and have inherent healing abilities, but sometimes they go awry. Naturopathic Doctors endeavour to restore and to support the body in it’s healing process.
I love this quote: “When a plant’s leaves turn brown, we do not paint them green. We look at the cause of the problem”. As Naturopathic Doctors, it is of upmost importance that we treat the cause of your health issue. I believe that it is important to understand the issue at large and not repress the symptoms, but to listen to what the body is telling us by investigating those symptoms. For example, if you suffer with acne, acne is the symptom. The cause is perhaps it is a hormonal issue, a stress issue, or an intestinal issue. Naturopathic doctors spend time with their patients to not only treat the and manage symptoms, but to treat the pathology in order to restore health in the body.
As a naturopathic doctor, I treat people and not diseases. I understand that each person is unique and requires specialized care. There is no “one size fits all” in naturopathic medicine and it’s a good thing! We all have different physical health, family history, nutritional status, and feelings and emotions which are all taken into account and addressed in the treatment plan from your Naturopathic Doctor.
As far as principles go, this is my favourite. As a part of my undergraduate degree at the University of Regina, I focused a lot on empowerment and self determination.
Here’s a quick definition from Merriam-Webster : Self determination is the
“free choice of one's own acts or states without external compulsion.”
What does this have to do with the principles? As I interpret them, I believe it has to do with empowering people, through teaching, to take charge of their own health. It also means being able to have a choice and a voice in your healthcare.
Naturopathic doctors, act as health teachers and enable you to make the choices that are best for you and your body. Naturopathic doctors will help you understand the complexities of health and illness. Naturopathic doctors help you better understand the factors that affect health so you are able to maintain your own health longterm.
At the root of our principles, we recognize that prevention is indeed the best medicine and make it a priority to prevent illness and maintain excellent health. To see a ND, you don't necessarily have to be "sick". You can chose to see an ND to help with health optimization. Whether that's weight loss, helping keep your cholesterol or blood pressure in check, taking charge of your health in a proactive way will make sure that you are able to fully enjoy your life for years to come.
Vis Medicatrix Naturae
The Healing Power of Nature
Identify and Treat the Cause