Before we dive deep into this post I want to first say that although my personal experiences with the models of medicine do reflect in the following, I am not against a traditional medical approach and I believe that both medical models are essential to treating and healing the whole person.
Proactive Model VS. Reactive Model
The naturopathic model of medicine is concerned with the prevention of dis-ease in their patients. This model is a way to support our bodies natural ability to heal itself. Naturopathic Doctors are trained to treat the whole self and to detect the root causes behind our ailments. Naturopathic medicine is a great choice for preventing disease or healing disease in its early stages. The downfall is that in emergency situations natural care cannot always solve the problems instantly and often require patience and time before it can be fully effective in our bodies.
The Conventional model of medicine tends to be more reactive to a patient’s ailments. Conventional medicine is extremely important in emergency situations and in uncontrollable diseases that have progressed or become deadly. The conventional way of solving a patients illness is to treat the symptoms of the ailments instead of finding what is causing these issues in the first place and then putting a stop to it before it progresses. The downfall is that often times these “treatments” are damaging to other components of our health which requires more medications to stabilize those side effects. The conventional model often creates a dependancy between patient and medication.
Healing Model VS. Treatment Model
The naturopathic approach is focused on whole-body healing. The focus of natural medicine is on providing our body with the tools to heal itself. Pills will not heal us, food will not heal us, vitamins or exercise will not heal us, our bodies are the only things capable of healing us. Naturopathic care focuses on diet and lifestyle to aid our body in its own healing process and to support our health along the way.
The conventional approach is focused on temporary relief in the body. The medicine is required constantly to become effective. If you are chronically ill and stop taking synthetic treatment, your symptoms and ailments will return in full effect or even become worse than before. Conventional medicine is meant to fix the symptoms behind the ailments a patient endures.
A Partnership Model VS. A Hierarchical Model
The naturopathic model emphasizes the relationship between doctor and patient. A naturopathic doctor educates the patient on what their ailments are, what they mean, how to treat it and why they chose to treat it in that specific way. The expectation of naturopathic care is that the patient agrees to make changes to their diet, their lifestyle and their mindset in order to truly support their healing. A patient who is expecting to be fixed with a simple pill is not meant for naturopathic care.
The conventional model emphasizes an authoritative approach to medicine. There is a giver and a receiver in this model. The conventional doctor will often take the patients information, provide a pill or a suggestion without explaining in detail what is really going on. This is not always the case as some conventional doctors take pride in educating their patients, but the typical model suggests that there is an idea that you should listen to what your doctor tells you and you will feel better again without having to make lifestyle changes. A patient who needs immediate care and is very sick will often prefer this model for instant relief.
Naturopathic Model AND Conventional Model
How about instead of comparing the two we accept and incorporate both models into our lives? Both models are valuable to our health care systems and there is no intent to undermine either method. In my own personal experience, and if you follow my Instagram account @thefedupthyroid you will know that I have not had the best of luck in the conventional model in regards to my autoimmunity and thyroid disorder, but I have not given up on finding a practitioner who supports my decision to heal naturally and is there for me if I ever were to require instant or emergency treatments. I believe that it is not only the patients responsibility to acknowledge both models but it’s also the doctors responsibility to accept that there is more than one way to help and treat a patient. Wherever you find relief and peace with yourself is where you belong in the medical community.
Everything that has happened in your life has led you to this moment. Thank you for reading!
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