What Is Integrative Health Care?

Below, a couple of our naturopathic doctors discuss integrative health care.

Even if we treat the root causes Naturopathically, there are a lot of physical causes as well to address through body work such as as massage, osteopathy, chiropractic, and acupuncture as well.

Dr. Kate Whimster, Naturopathic Doctor

With medical doctors, or allopathic medical doctors, which is not the Naturopathic system, it’s very common, with almost every patient.

I usually like to see a copy of any blood work they’ve done, or any testing they’ve already done through their medical doctor or through any specialist.

Usually in the first visit, we’ll fill out a release of records fax form. And fax that to their doctor to get a copy of things they’ve already tested. That’s the most typical way that I interact with medical doctors.

Sometimes, if there is something I need to share with their medical doctor, or certain testing that I think is very important for them to have, and the medical doctor may not understand why, then in some cases I will write a letter to explain why I think this is important.

Our healthcare is public healthcare, we pay for OHIP. And so there is a lot of things that OHIP covers that people don’t need to pay extra for if they don’t need to. Again, like basic blood tests and certain tests that are relevant to their condition, as long as their doctor understands the reason.

About Integrative Health Care

We integrate with other Natural practitioners all the time. For example, as a Naturopathic Doctor, I’m trained in acupuncture. But generally I don’t do acupuncture anymore, I refer to our acupuncturists.

Acupuncturists are highly trained and wonderful at acupuncture, so often I refer to them. I think there is amazing things they can do that really help what we do.

I also really love to refer to massage therapy and physical modalities, especially for things like pain, tension, stress, headaches, those kinds of things.

Even if we are treating the root causes Naturopathically, there are a lot of physical causes as well that can be addressed through body work such as massage, osteopathy, chiropractic, and acupuncture as well.

Dr. Amanda Jaeger, Naturopathic Doctor

Integrative medicine is having a team on your side that are willing to work together to produce optimal results in terms of wellness for an individual.

So, Medical doctors, Alternative Medicine, Naturopaths, Massage Therapists, Acupuncturists. Just have the right person to go to, for the right questions and for the right support.

Everybody shares the information that comes forth from that. And it’s just putting the pieces of the puzzle to make sure you are reaching your goal.

CBT is a very effective method for dealing with anxiety and depression.

It looks at how your thoughts are influencing your mood. It looks at how your beliefs about yourself, other people, and about how the world works influences your mood, and how it influences your mental health, these are all important things to look at. 

CBT can have a very structured away of approaching anxiety and depression. It lends itself well to scientific study because it is easy to operationalize.

It’s very easy to attain measurable outcomes, and to find your dependent variable and your independent variable. CBT enables the measurement of change because it is very structured. It lends itself well to peer-reviewed articles and scientific study. 

Other approaches that may be more emotion-based; you can’t really measure an emotion, you can measure behaviour. You can operationalize and track how a persons thoughts change over time based on their self-report, based on what they are writing, but it’s very hard to measure how a persons emotions are changing.

Emotion-focused approaches, psychodynamic approaches that look at how the past influences the present; these are much more difficult to operationalize and measure. 

Some people bring in mindfulness and combining it with CBT. Mindfulness allows for a more centred approach, being able to focus on the emotions, how it feels in the body, what’s going, and what their experience is with it.

Sometimes bringing in mindfulness can pick up and resolve some of the weaknesses of CBT, and conversely, CBT can be good for picking up and dealing with some of the weaknesses of mindfulness.

If you’re looking for integrative health support, contact us at 416-792-4400 or by using the form below and we’ll book you for a FREE 15-minute phone or in-person session with one of our practitioners.