Naturopathic doctors can and do work with conventional medical doctors. ND’s are trained to refer patients to other health care practitioners, where appropriate. Most naturopathic doctors cross-refer extensively to other health care practitioners.
The Safety and Effectiveness of Naturopathic Medicine
The safety record for naturopathic medicine is excellent. This makes sense given the emphasis on non-toxic, natural source medicines and gentle, non-invasive treatments. Side effects are rare and NDs are knowledgeable about contraindications between naturopathic remedies and conventional medicines.
In addition, NDs are trained to recognized conditions which are outside their scope of practice and to refer to other health practitioners when it is appropriate to do so.
The goal of naturopathic practice is to treat underlying disorders and to restore normal body function by enhancing the body’s own healing abilities. Therefore, naturopathic doctors must focus their efforts on understanding the unique needs of each patient. Naturopathic doctors assist the body’s healing powers by using safe, effective non-pharmaceutical approaches with patients.
As a result naturopathic treatments are highly individualized. Patients are involved in their treatment programs and learn to make effective, educated self-care decisions, which can prevent future health problems.
Naturopathic diagnosis and therapeutics are supported by scientific research drawn from peer-reviewed journals from many disciplines, including naturopathic medicine,conventional medicine, European complementary medicine, clinical nutrition,phytotherapy, pharmacognosy, homeopathy, psychology and spirituality.
Information technology and new concepts in clinical outcomes and assessment are particularly well-suited to evaluating the effectiveness of naturopathic treatments and protocols and are being used in research, both at naturopathic medical schools and in the offices of practicing naturopathic doctors. Clinical research into natural therapies has become an increasingly important focus for naturopathic doctors.