German homeopath John H. Scheel was the first person to use the term naturopathy in the later part of 1800s. John H. Scheel used the word naturopathy to represent a specific form of medication whereby natural substances are used for the holistic treatment of a person. Hence, we may deduce that naturopathy or naturopathic medication is a total health care procedure that only uses an assortment of natural remedial therapies.
In the late 19th century, Benedict Lust introduced naturopathy into the United States. In fact, Benedict Lust had been to the United States to teach as well as practice the different methods of hydrotherapy or use of water for healing different conditions and other remedies that had been made popular in Europe by the renowned ‘water doctor’ Father Sebastian Kneipp.
It may be noted here that a group of physicians who practiced the hydrotherapy techniques of Father Sebastian Kneipp convened a meeting in 1900 and decided to widen their range of medical practice by integrating all accessible natural therapeutic processes during that time. It was from this meeting that naturopathy became a different branch of learning in medical science. In the initial days, naturopathy comprised topics such as botanical or herbal medicine, nutritional therapy, homeopathy, medicinal electricity or electric shock therapy, psychology and original manipulative remedies.
It is surprising to note that the medical conventions conducted on naturopathy during the 1920s brought together over 10,000 practitioners. However, this unique discipline of medical science witnessed a turn down during the 1940s and 1950s following the development and growth of pharmaceutical medicines, technological medicines as well as the increasing belief in the thought that medicines could cure all ailments and disorders.
Nonetheless, naturopathy or naturopathic medicine witnesses a resurrection during the later part of 1970s as more and more health conscious people began to seek options to the traditional or conformist medical system. The naturopathy practiced these days is somewhat different from what it was in the initial stages. With a view to heal a disease and reinstate a person’s health, present day naturopathic medicine accepts ideas, views as well as technologies from other form of medicines, including herbal medicine, homeopathy, exercise therapy, clinical nutrition, counseling, acupuncture, hydrotherapy, natural child birth and even physical medicine – handling or treatment of muscles, bones and spine as well as physiotherapy.
Naturopathy is very vital for our wellbeing, as it offers us an assortment of prospects of healing ourselves instead of just treating the symptoms associated with any particular disease. In fact, the signs as well as the symptoms of any particular ailment process are viewed as our body’s endeavor to rectify the imbalance and, therefore, it needs to be improved instead of suppressing it to allow healing to take place. One major reason for the increasing popularity of naturopathy is that the human body has a natural requirement for restoring its natural balance and, hence, it reverberates with the viewpoint of naturopathy. In addition, naturopathic treatments are usually safe and non-toxic. They are also mild to the human body and extremely effectual for nearly all ailments or the different stages in the advancement of an ailment.
Majority of the medical practitioners are experts in particular systems of the body and focus on ailments which are related to their specific area of specialization. Time and again, the ailment a patient is suffering from is actually segmented into a particular disease or an organ system. As a result of this, the manner in which an entire individual is affected turns out to be less significant. On the other hand, doctors practicing naturopathy are trained in such a way that they focus on the complete individual instead of simply concentrating on the process of the disease. It may be mentioned here that several patients suffering from a common disease, for instance, multiple sclerosis, will experience some common symptoms, while there will be some other symptoms that will be exceptional in the case of each patient. In fact, the unique symptoms experienced by a patient are the real manifestations of the vital force and they enable the medical practitioner to personalize the treatment with a view to help the healing process. Hence, the treatment for all the patients suffering from a common condition will include a number of general remedial modalities, in addition to some unique therapies for each individual to treat their exceptional symptoms.
In specific instances, it becomes necessary to prescribe more potent drugs for a brief while to allow the body to have some rest. Such instances usually involve substantial pathology and the body lacks the aptitude to prevail over them at that particular time. In fact, physicians practicing neuropathy undergo methodical training regarding the use of drug therapy too and owing to such preparation they are themselves able to recommend specific prescription drugs or they refer the patient to any other appropriate medical practitioner. In addition, naturopathic physicians undergo special trainings that help them to identify with the patho-physiology of the ailment’s conditions and, hence, as and when required, they are able to refer the patients for specific diagnostic examinations or sometimes even surgical procedures. Several physicians who practice naturopathy also have special referral associations with physicians of different other disciplines of medicine.
The patients clearly realize the advantages of using naturopathy when they are able to obtain the best of different forms of medicine as a result of employing the services of a naturopathic physician as their main healthcare provider. Precisely speaking, when an individual utilizes the services of a naturopathic physician they not only benefit from the proficiency of a physician who has been thoroughly trained in diagnosis, but also one who is very familiar with different natural therapies as well as different other medical disciplines. In addition, the patients also gain as they are being examined and treated by a doctor who has undergone training to view the complete human being instead of just treating an organ system or disease.
As a result of such a comprehensive methodology, physicians practicing naturopathy put together therapies that are most appropriate for particular patients as well as the health condition they are suffering from. In addition, whenever necessary, they also refer the patient to other appropriate physician from different disciplines of medicine. Consequently, the patients are the eventual beneficiaries. This is because they become further involved in affairs related to their healthcare and also learn the different ways they can put off diseases from occurring and also receive excellent healthcare.
Naturopathic medical practice is based on the principles mentioned below:
- The healing power of nature
- It is important to always bear in mind that nature is a great healing agent. Nature effectively functions via different curative methods in our body and mind to preserve as well as reinstate our health. When such inborn healing systems in our body break down, naturopathic medicinal practitioners work towards refurbishing and sustaining them. They utilize different methods, medications and modus operandi that are related to the natural progression.
- First do no harm
- As the naturopathic practitioners or physicians use non-invasive methods of healing, there are lesser hazards of any adverse side effects from their treatment. In fact, they exactly know which patients they can cure in safety and the ones they should pass on to physicians practicing other forms of medicine.
- Find the cause
- It is to be noted here that all ailments are a fall-out of one or more reasons. The illnesses may be a result of a person’s lifestyle, food or other habits of the individual. Hence, a physician practicing naturopathy will first try and find out the cause behind the illness.
- Treat the whole person
- Normally health or a disease is directly or indirectly related to a number of issues like multifaceted interface of physical, emotional, nutritional, genetic, ecological, lifestyle and other aspects. Keeping this crucial idea as well as the above mentioned factors in view, naturopathic practitioners not only treat the disease, but also treat the person as a whole.
- Preventive medicine
- What is significant about naturopathy is that this discipline of medical science effectively helps in preventing a minor illness or disorder from developing into a major health problem like chronic or degenerative ailments. In fact, naturopathic physicians not only treat the patients, but also teach them the basic health rules that would enable them to remain fit and fine. In this form of medical science, the patients have a major role in keeping themselves healthy and by adhering to the naturopathic physicians’ advices they may avoid the risks of developing any major disease.
Naturopathic medicines are helpful in treating a wide range of ailments and disorders as well as preserve and restore a person’s health. While this stream of medical science is able to cure normally severe ailments like flu, colds, sore throat, bronchitis and digestive disorders, this form of treatment may also be utilized to cure insistent degenerative diseases like arthritis, cancer and other auto-immune (a disorder caused by allergy to own body) ailments. In fact, it is even possible to cure chronic structural disorders through naturopathy.