Well may you ask “What Is Functional Medicine?” Functional Medicine has been heralded as the future of healthcare. Here at CK Health, we strive to practice functional medicine, and absolutely believe that it is the way forward in terms of helping people move into wellness.
It is a completely different model of care to conventional medicine. Traditionally, if you feel unwell, you would see a medical Doctor for help. They would prescribe you a medication and if that doesn’t help would refer you to a specialist doctor.
In our current medical model, specialists know a lot about one organ or condition and not a lot about anything else. This is problematic with complex conditions that span body systems, as people tend to be referred on to more and more specialists, with nobody really connecting the dots for them.
The training GPs and specialists have is to match a drug to a disease. It begins a cycle where you are then prescribed more drugs to counteract the side effects of other drugs. Pharmaceutical medications rarely address underlying causes of disease. They suppress body functions and cause other imbalances in the body.
Don’t get me wrong, there is definitely a time and place for addressing acute illnesses with medical drugs and it is usually where there is a life threatening issue or the chance that it will become one.
Functional medicine asks, why is the body not functioning as it should be and how can we restore function.
It is not about suppressing symptoms or using band-aid solutions.
Functional medicine recognises that everyone is different and uses and individualised approach to treatment. It aims to identify and address the root causes of health issues and views the body as a whole system that works together. Functional medicine uses scientific research to look for connections and drivers of disease and to use the drivers as a tool to reverse the symptoms.
Functional medicine recognises that any condition may have many causes, and one cause can influence many conditions. Take depression for example. It may be caused by thyroid dysfunction, vitamin B12 deficiency, grief, lack of sunlight, and gut dysbiosis among other things. It’s better to rule out and treat all of these things prior to prescribing antidepressants wouldn’t you say??
Inflammation, for example, can be involved in IBS, arthritis, headaches, ASD, and many more conditions. Wouldn’t it be better to work out what’s causing the inflammation and removing the trigger rather than just mask it with medication??
Function medicine asks the question “Why is this happening in the first place?” instead of just masking symptoms. It links concepts like inflammation or cell dysfunction, or bacterial dysbiosis, and recognises that these signs and symptoms work across all body systems.
Functional medicine takes a low risk holistic approach to condition management and symptom reversal applying the right tool at the right time to make a difference to the patient’s outcomes.
It’s called patient centred approach, and it involves really listening to the patient’s story. That’s why at CK Health, our Newcastle Naturopaths spend a lot of time going through your health history and how things came to be the way they are today for you.
We recognise through using a functional medicine approach to health care, that the current state of someone’s health is an interaction between their genetic predisposition, the environment they live and work in, diet, emotional and mental state and lifestyle choices. All of these things add up to affect the total function of a person’s body.
As part of finding out the big picture of why your health is not at its best function we might utilise different diagnostic techniques such as functional pathology, microbiome mapping, genetic profiling, neurotransmitter function, hormone profile, allergy and intolerance testing.
Treatment options are personalised and aim to bring the body back into correct function and optimise your health.
Here at CK Health we utilise the the following as part of our toolbox to improve your health:
- Therapeutic diet
- Stress management
- Detoxification support including infrared sauna therapy
- Halo therapy (salt room)
- Exercise and activity
- Toxin exposure and reduction
- Herbal medicine
- Nutritional supplementation
- Behaviour modification
- Improving water and air quality
- Topical creams
- Compounded amino acids and nutritional medicine
- Supporting medication and surgery when necessary
- Prebiotic and probiotic supplementation
As you can see, functional medicine is a true holistic approach to medicine that supports the patients needs as the first and only priority.
We’d love to chat more about how we can use a functional medicine model to support you get your body back to optimal function.
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