Frequently Asked Questions
Is Naturopathic Medicine Scientific?
Thousands of modern clinical studies have validated a variety of natural medicines used by NDs: Echinacea for the immune system and St. John’s wort for depression are just two examples.
It is important to note that, since most remedies are not patentable, manufacturers find little financial incentive in conducting costly scientific studies. Thus, funding from independent sources is essential for scientific validation of naturopathic treatments. (see news and reviews for information on recent research)
How Are NDs Trained?
NDs take a minimum of three years premedical studies at university, followed by four years at a recognized college of naturopathic medicine. The education encompasses basic medical sciences, naturopathic principles and therapeutics, and 1500 hours of supervised clinical experience. In addition graduates must also pass rigorous standardized exams to qualify for practice.
Do NDs Interact with other Health Professionals?
NDs are trained to recognize conditions that are outside their scope of practice and refer to other health practitioners when it is appropriate to do so. Naturopathic treatments are often combined with conventional medical treatments. It is becoming more common to find NDs working with other health professionals for the good of the patient. NDs refer patients to many other practitioners, both conventional and alternative.
What Can I Expect From the First Visit?
Your initial consultation with an ND involves a detailed health history which is usually 60-90 minutes in length. This allows your ND to get a comprehensive picture of your current state of health and physical, mental and emotional factors that affect it. Your ND may also request to do a screening physical exam related to your complaint or recommend various testing to further diagnosis and treatment.
In this visit your ND will outline a recommended treatment plan and answer any questions you may have. Remember your doctor is also your teacher in health. We want you to understand your health as well as feel like you are understood.
Does OHIP Cover the Cost of a Visit to a Naturopath?
Currently, OHIP does NOT cover visits to a Naturopathic Doctor. Many private health care plans do cover Naturopathic treatments. Check with your provider to determine the extent of coverage you have available.
What Kind of Health Problems can be Treated?
Virtually all chronic and most acute conditions will benefit from treatment by a naturopathic doctor. People of all ages can be helped. The most common health concerns brought to NDs include:
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Allergies and Environmental Illnesses
- Arthritis and Fibromyalgia
- Hypertension, Atherosclerosis, Heart Problems
- IBS, Crohn’s disease, Ulcerative Colitis
- Chronic constipation, Gas and Bloating
- Eczema, Psoriasis, Acne
- Cystitis, Prostatitis, Impotence
- Colds and ‘Flu
- Ear and Throat Infections
- Intestinal Upsets
- Menopausal problems
- PMS and Menstrual Disorders
- Fibrocystic Breast Disease
- Enhancing Health During Pregnancy
- Endometriosis, Ovarian Cysts, Uterine Fibroids
- Mental or Emotional Stress
- Anxiety, Depression
- Stress-related disorders
- Attention Deficit Disorder
- Minimizing Negative Effects of Surgery, Radiation and Chemotherapy