Holistic Doctors

Nurse Anesthesiologist

Holistic medicine is a type of healing and care that deals with the mind, body, and spirit as a whole, instead of focusing on just one area. Holistic medicine incorporates both traditional and non-traditional therapies in order to provide the patient with the best overall care and treatment available to them. Holistic medicine approaches the individual, rather than hand out the same cure to every person with the same symptoms--each person is different, and therefore each disease and its cure is different as well. Holistic doctors provide the methods for healing, and the patient ultimately cures himself through lifestyle and belief changes.

Holistic doctors have twelve basic principles which apply to their practice, as adopted by the American Medical Association in 1993:

  • Holistic doctors embrace a variety of safe, effective options in diagnosis and treatment including:
    • Education for lifestyle changes and self-care
    • Complementary approaches
    • Conventional drugs and surgery
  • Searching for the underlying causes of disease is preferable to treating symptoms alone.
  • Holistic doctors expend as much effort in establishing what kind of patient has a disease as they do in establishing what kind of disease a patient has.
  • Prevention is preferable to treatment and is usually more cost-effective. The most cost-effective approach evokes the patient's own innate healing capabilities.
  • llness is viewed as a manifestation of a dysfunction of the whole person, not as an isolated event.
  • A major determinant of healing outcomes is the quality of the relationship established between physician and patient, in which patient autonomy is encouraged.
  • The ideal physician-patient relationship considers the needs, desires, awareness and insight of the patient as well as those of the physician.
  • Physicians significantly influence patients by their example.
  • Illness, pain and the dying process can be learning opportunities for patients and physicians.
  • Holistic doctors encourage patients to evoke the healing power of love, hope, humor and enthusiasm and to release the toxic consequences of hostility, shame, greed, depression and prolonged fear, anger and grief.
  • Unconditional love is life's most powerful healer. Physicians strive to adopt an attitude of unconditional love for patients, themselves, and other practitioners.
  • Optimal health is much more than the absence of sickness. It is the conscious pursuit of the highest qualities of the spiritual, mental, emotional, physical, environmental and social aspects of the human experience, and the awareness of being fully alive.

An appointment with a holistic physician is similar to a conventional doctor's visit. The physician takes a thorough medical history and performs a complete physical exam, as well as necessary diagnostic tests. Following this, a holistic physician will look into the emotional and spiritual aspects of your life and carefully consider their role in your health, leading to a unique treatment regimen based on your individual needs and unique life experiences.

Holistic doctors work in offices and clinics, most often in private practice as a primary care physician, working a regular week or evening and weekend hours as needed. Their income is similar to that of traditional physicians, usually averaging around $100,000 per year. Their education requirements are also similar: a bachelor’s degree in a pre-med program, followed by three years of medical school, culminating in being licensed as an MD or DO. Following this, they may choose to study homeopathy or a similar holistic medicine program, and take weekend courses and seminars in holistic medicine to further their education.

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