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“Let thy food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food” Hippocrates, the 'Father of Medicine'

FAQ

Why should I go to a Naturopathic Doctor (an ND)?

Patients enjoy having more time with their doctor for a personalized treatment experience. Most appointments to see an ND range from 30-90 minutes, and will include plenty of time to thoroughly explore their case, prepare an individualized treatment plan, educate and empower them in their health care, and answer any questions or concerns that they might have. Patients also enjoy that ND’s can treat a wide variety of conditions safely and effectively without the use of drugs and major surgery. 

Patients also like to integrate their conventional medical treatment with naturopathic medical treatment in order to receive the best that each practice has to offer. Patients often see ND’s because they have health problems that have not been helped by any other means. Patients appreciate that ND’s have been trained in many different modalities and can work as part of their treatment team until something is found that works. 

 Another unique aspect of naturopathic medicine is that it focuses on finding the cause of your symptoms or condition. When the cause is found you can actually be cured and prevent having a recurrence.  This is different from conventional care from a MD or DO who aim treatment of a symptom with a drug.  This type of treatment does not cure a condition, but only masks the root condition while only treating the symptoms.  Drug based treatments also come with numerous unpleasant side effects such as weight gain, constipation, mental fog, confusion, fatigue, and more. For example, a person getting frequent migraines can take a pain reliever and can have a temporary fix.  With naturopathic care things as simple as a food allergy can be discovered cure to the migraines is found. 

Who benefits from seeing a Naturopathic Doctor?

Anyone of any age with any health concern can benefit from Naturopathic medical care. The reasons for seeking Dr. Oliver’s care are as varied and unique as the patients she treats. Some patients are already very healthy and working to improve their health further. For example, Dr. Oliver enjoys working with women to improve their fertility and prepare them for optimally healthy and successful pregnancy. Others seek care because they are suffering from an acute or chronic health condition and would like to overcome it naturally. ND’s have many options for treating acute conditions like the common cold, flu, headaches, ear aches, constipation, urinary tract infections, and more. Others seek care to integrate Naturopathic Medicine with their conventional medical care.

Should I see a Naturopathic Doctor even if I'm not sick?

Yes. ND’s focus on preventative medicine. Even if you are currently healthy, there are often lifestyle or diet changes that can help prevent future problems. ND’s believe that there is more to being healthy than just the absence of overt disease. They believe that it is important to focus on and deal with even seemingly minor health concerns in order to prevent them from becoming a cause of concern later in life. Dr. Oliver wants her patients to age gracefully, still feeling young and active at every stage of life.

Is Naturopathic Medicine cost-effective?

Yes. By preventing progressive chronic disease, which is so costly to treat, Naturopathic care saves money over the long-term. But greater health is about more than money. Greater health means a higher quality of life. It means feeling young and active, and being better able to fully enjoy life throughout life. Health is priceless.

Are Naturopathic Doctors primary care physicians?

Yes. ND’s are considered primary care providers. They can legally diagnose and treat disease.

Is a Naturopathic Doctor a "real" doctor?

Yes. Naturopathic Doctors (ND’s), like Medical Doctors (MD’s), are real doctors, and are highly trained. ND’s are required to first attain a Bachelor’s degree with the same basic science pre-med courses. They then attend a fully accredited four-year medical degree program like every other doctor. They are then awarded a doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine. After passing rigorous national board exams, they are state-licensed as primary care physicians.

For more information please visit the “What is Naturopathic Medicine” page.

What types of conditions do Naturopathic Doctors treat?

ND’s are trained as primary care physicians and providers. They can treat all health conditions.

Is Naturopathic Medicine safe?

Yes, very safe. One of the six core principles of Naturopathic Medicine is to “First Do No Harm.” ND’s are highly trained and sit for boards to ensure safety. For example, ND’s are trained to understand the complex interactions between pharmaceuticals and botanical medicines. If a patient is already using pharmaceuticals, botanical medicines are only used and prescribed with this understanding in mind. There is a large body of research that demonstrates how effective and safe Naturopathic therapies are under the guidance of a doctor. It is also important to understand that although something is considered a natural medicine, it can be harmful if improperly used. When stronger natural medicines are required, ND’s utilize them very carefully, and monitor their patients very closely. ND’s recommend that natural medicines are used to treat disease only under the guidance of a qualified health practitioner.

Is Naturopathic Medicine scientific?

Yes. There is a tremendous amount of research demonstrating the efficacy and safety of Naturopathic therapies being conducted and published in many countries around the world. There is also a large body of medicinal knowledge that has been passed down through tens of thousands of years of human experience in many cultures. ND’s combine current scientific medical advances with all the wisdom passed down through generations to provide the best treatment possible. To maintain licensure, ND’s are required to complete yearly continuing education to keep up with advances in medicine.

Do Naturopathic Doctors do physical exams?

Yes. ND’s perform all indicated physical exams. This includes screening physicals, as well as sensitive exams, such as gynecologic and men’s health exams.

What types of treatments does a Naturopathic Doctor use?

ND’s utilize so many different therapeutic modalities that it would be impractical to list them all here. Some of the most common therapeutic modalities that ND’s use include lifestyle counseling, food as medicine, botanical medicine, supplementation therapy, hydrotherapy, naturopathic manipulation therapy, physiotherapy, exercise therapeutics, homeopathy, Bach flower essences, minor surgery, pharmaceuticals, IV therapy, and so much more! For more information, please refer to the page, “What is Naturopathic Medicine” and “Services”.

Are Naturopathic Doctors opposed to pharmaceuticals and major surgery?

No. ND’s believe that pharmaceuticals and surgery are appropriate and important health care tools that have their place. ND’s prescribe pharmaceuticals and make referrals for major surgery when more natural, less harmful and invasive treatments do not accomplish certain minimum therapeutic objectives. The outcome of surgery utilized as an adjunctive treatment in conjunction with primary naturopathic care is far superior compared to the same surgery by itself, in terms of success, recovery time, and quality of life immediately afterward and beyond. ND’s are trained to educate and guide their patients, and are trained to implement many different modalities. Because ND’s are well-trained in the use of lifestyle counseling, food as medicine, botanical medicine, supplementation therapy, hydrotherapy, naturopathic manipulation therapy, physiotherapy, and exercise therapeutics, ND’s usually do not require the use of pharmaceuticals and major surgery. The exception is emergency situations. Pharmaceuticals and surgery are excellent therapeutic modalities for emergency situations. Indeed, ND’s are willing and trained and legally permitted to guide their patients off of their pharmaceutical medications when it is appropriate. For example, for a patient with hypertension, the conventional medicine standard of care would be the immediate implementation of a blood pressure lowering pharmaceutical, but an ND could choose any and all of the abovementioned modalities to help the patient lower his or her blood pressure without pharmaceuticals. An ND would only prescribe pharmaceuticals if they were absolutely required. For example, it may be the case that the patient presents with such severe hypertension that it may be necessary to prescribe some pharmaceuticals in conjunction with other modalities for the time being, with the future goal of easing off of the pharmaceuticals to the point of no longer being required. Or it may be the case that a patient for one reason or another does not respond to other modalities, and truly requires pharmaceutical intervention to manage his or her hypertension.

Can Naturopathic Doctors prescribe pharmaceuticals?

Yes. Although ND’s prefer to use more Naturopathic therapies, they will prescribe pharmaceuticals when needed. ND’s believe that it is often the case that not only are pharmaceuticals not needed, but that they suppress the body’s attempt to heal itself, and make matters worse in the long run.

Can I use Naturopathic Medicine if I am taking prescription drugs?

Yes. ND’s are well trained in pharmaceutical medicine and have a deep and broad understanding of drug-drug, drug-botanical, drug-supplement, and other interactions. For the best care, it is of paramount importance that you carefully explain to all health care providers exactly which prescription and over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, botanicals, supplements, and other types of medicine that you are currently using. This even means explaining which kind of multivitamin you are taking, and which part of your body your chiropractor is currently working on. This is so important because all of these therapies interact with each other in complex ways. If you are also seeing an MD, DC, or any other health care practitioner, Dr. Oliver is always ready to communicate with them about any questions you might have, or any questions they might have, and how we can best work as a team to give you the best health care possible. Dr. Oliver finds that with time most of her patients are able to gradually reduce their reliance on prescription drugs, and eventually stop taking them entirely.

Is Naturopathic Medicine covered by my health insurance or discount health plan?

It might be. Insurance coverage varies widely from state to state and from one insurance provider to another. There are health insurance providers that do reimburse for Naturopathic treatment. Prior to your visit, contact your insurance provider to see if your plan includes coverage for alternative health services, including visits to ND’s. For more information on insurance coverage, please visit the page about, “Your First Visit,” and please do not hesitate to call the clinic with any questions that you might have. If you do not currently have a health insurance plan that reimburses you for Naturopathic treatment, we also offer discounts for visits paid for fully in cash on the day of the visit to help provide you with reasonably priced health care.

Do I need a referral to see Dr. Oliver?

No. ND’s are primary care physicians. While they do accept referrals from other physicians, they do not require them. ND’s refer patients as needed to other health care practitioners, including chiropractors, acupuncturists, dentists, massage therapists, physical therapists, MD’s, DO’s and others.

Can my Naturopathic Doctor and Medical Doctor work together for my treatment? What about with my Chiropractor? Or my Acupuncturist?

Yes. Dr. Oliver believes that patients are best-served when given access to all treatment options. ND’s, MD’s, DC’s, LAc’s, (and others) have different experience and expertise to share. When this is combined, patients get the best of modern medicine. This is what Dr. Oliver wants for all her patients.

What should I bring with me to my first appointment?

Although not necessary for your first visit, if would be helpful to bring copies of previous medical records and lab work results. It is also helpful to write down or bring with you any prescription and over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, botanicals, supplements, or anything else that you are currently taking. It is also important to take the time to thoroughly fill out your “New Patient Intake Form” before your first visit so that Dr. Oliver can more easily understand your current health status and make a more appropriate assessment and more effective treatment plan. The “New Patient Intake Form” can be downloaded from the page titled, “Your First Visit.”

How many visits will I need to make me feel better?

The number of visits needed will be based on the nature of your individual health concerns. Some patients do not desire a lot of intervention. They might only want Dr. Oliver to make their ear ache go away. Instances like this might take only one visit. Another patient might have Endometriosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Osteoarthritis, Diabetes, Cirrhosis, or another chronic condition that might require many years to overcome. And it might be the case that a condition is irreversible, and cannot be overcome by any therapeutic means, and that the best that can be done is to treat the condition as much as possible and to heal the body as much as possible. For some conditions, this might mean doing whatever is necessary to make sure that the condition does not become worse.

What kinds of dietary changes will I be expected to make?

Ultimately, food is our most powerful medicine. The dietary decisions that we make impact our health more than all the other things we do combined. Remember, we are what we eat. Our cells use the food that we eat to build our body. Dr. Oliver believes that high-quality, unprocessed, whole food is the primary medicine that most people need to begin healing. Dr. Oliver prefers to meet her patients wherever they are as far as their readiness and ability to make dietary changes. Not everyone is ready to commit to the most healthy diet possible starting tomorrow. Building healthy dietary habits requires a lot of time and work, and most importantly, a lot of guidance and support. Furthermore, the fact is that not everyone has the opportunity to eat the perfect diet. Dr. Oliver helps patients implement the best dietary changes that they are capable of. For example, not everyone can afford to buy only organic local produce. Dr. Oliver works with her patients within their own unique personal limits to help them create a realistic diet to achieve and maintain their health goals.

Will I have to take supplements?

No. Dr. Oliver does not force her patients to do or take anything. It is true that there are many conditions that benefit tremendously with supplementation therapy. It is also true that most patients do require some supplementation therapy of some sort for the achievement and maintenance of optimal health. That being said, as far as supplementation therapy goes, Dr. Oliver’s intention is that - as much as possible - supplements be used only as a stepping stone. Dr. Oliver creates treatment plans that aim to build her patients’ health to the point where supplementation therapy is no longer necessary. For example, at first a patient may need to use digestive enzymes as part of their treatment plan to optimize digestion of food, so that more nutrients reach the body to build the health of the entire body, including the digestive system. But there should come a point where this is no longer necessary, because the patient’s digestive system will become capable of accomplishing this on its own without the digestive enzymes supplement. Another example: sometimes patients present with significant disease that substantially decreases their quality of life. This might mean that they are incapable of taking care of themselves, or that they are in pain, or that they are significantly fatigued. Supplementation therapy can be used to quickly progress the patients to a state of health where they are more capable of taking care of themselves, and they are capable of implementing the diet and lifestyle changes that are necessary to achieve and maintain optimal health, without supplements. Ultimately, Dr. Oliver is highly trained in the application of many Naturopathic therapeutic modalities. If a patient prefers to not use supplementation therapy, Dr. Oliver respects that preference 100%. That would never be an obstacle to the development of a successful long-term therapeutic relationship.

Do you have a cancellation policy?

Please provide a 24-hour notice if you need to cancel. Dr. Oliver reserves the right to bill you if a 24-hour notice is not provided.

If you have explored the website and are considering scheduling an appointment, but still have reservations, maybe some unanswered questions, and are not sure if it is the right decision for you, please also feel free to call Dr. Oliver. She would really love the opportunity to clarify anything for you.

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