Functional medicine is a modern approach to healthcare that seeks to address the underlying causes of disease, rather than just treating acute symptoms. Practitioners of functional medicine take a more patient-centric approach to your care by viewing you as a whole person—with an integrated body—as opposed to just an isolated set of symptoms.
How functional medicine is different
The movement of functional medicine grows out of an increasing need for today’s doctors and nurses to be able to address complex health issues. Unfortunately, much of today’s conventional approach to health care is oriented for acute care that seeks to treat a patient’s immediate symptoms over addressing the root causes of those symptoms.
Time With Patients
Due to hospital patient quotas, many doctors in today’s conventional medical systems simply do not have the time to adequately examine the complexities of each patient’s health. In some of these settings, patients average less than 10 minutes with their doctors.
As a functional medicine practice, we spend at least 90 minutes with each of our patients on their initial visits. The average visit after that is 30-60 minutes. We take the time to ask thorough questions and to listen in order to gain an in-depth understanding of the root causes of your body’s dysfunction.
Without a doubt, our collective knowledge grows each year about how to better care people’s various health needs. Yet, it can often be decades before new medical research makes into the common practice. Additionally, doctors in conventional medical systems rarely have time to read the latest research due to high patient quotas and busy work demands.
Taking the time to throughly understand each patient’s health allows functional medicine doctors to consult the latest research during treatment, effectively reducing the gap between new breakthroughs and practical care from decades to years.
Unfortunately, many of today’s patients are often forced to choose between traditional Western medicine and alternative, holistic approaches to healthcare when evaluating their care. We believe both have value and can play in important role in treating a patient. In addition to prescribing medicine, we may also prescribe a new nutrition program or fitness regime. In some cases, a botanical supplement, or counseling, can serve as an effective, much safer alternative to taking a pharmaceutical drug. Each patient is unique and deserves to have the best science-based care from both Western medicine and holistic care.