Naturopathic medicine is a distinct system of primary care focusing on prevention and natural therapies. Naturopathic philosophy lays the groundwork for the practice of naturopathic medicine, and helps guide the treatment decisions.
The practice of naturopathic medicine is governed by the following six principles:
- The Healing Power of Nature. Naturopathic medicine recognizes and respects the inherent self-healing ability of the body.
- Identify and Treat the Cause. The naturopathic doctor seeks to identify and remove the underlying causes of illness, rather than trying to eliminate or suppress symptoms.
- First Do No Harm. Naturopathic doctors use therapies that are gentle and effective.
- Doctor As Teacher. Naturopathic doctors educate their patients and promote self-responsibility for health.
- Treat the Whole Person. Naturopathic doctors treat each patient by taking into account all facets of the individual’s well-being, including physical, mental, emotional, social, environmental, and other factors.
- Prevention is the best medicine. Naturopathic physicians emphasize the prevention of disease.