Traditional vs. Functional

What does traditional vs. functional even mean? Well the way I see it there are basically 2 main types of medicine, traditional medicine and functional medicine. To be honest I didn’t know much about medicine before I saw how flawed the regular healthcare system is and the way doctors approach patient care. I do feel that modern prescriptions help in the healing process (if the patient *really* needs that particular prescription) but I also can see that these prescriptions are relied on way too heavily by the conventional doctors of modern society.

Anyone who has ever made a doctor appointment for any reason can attest to the fact that it is not a very satisfying experience. You go, tell the doc what’s wrong, a brief discussion takes place, maybe some tests are done at best, and then you are sent on your way typically with a prescription in hand. You then proceed to walk away with the feeling, but what if this medicine doesn’t help me? What else can I do? I am in a lot of pain. I don’t think the doc understands….and so on and so forth.

Traditional medicine is practiced by most doctors in hospitals and clinics. It is the standard, conventional way. We all know that doctors specialize in one area of the body. So it’s only logical that if you have a skin problem that you make an appointment with a dermatologist, right? Depends. Sometimes these doctors forget that the body works as a complete system and that a problem at site A could be caused by a problem way over there in site H.

I must make note however, that I have faith in the traditional system as far as *after* someone has already been diagnosed with a disease, such as heart failure, and needs surgeries, etc. I just don’t like how prevention of such disease is blatantly disregarded and most people are left grappling with the questions of how they became “diseased” in the first place. Some of it is obvious; some of it not. These traditional doctors have a hard time answering the tough questions which leaves people lacking much needed knowledge.

Functional medicine is a specialty that views the body as one whole system. It is a holistic approach that includes addressing lifestyle habits such as diet/nutrition, exercise, and stress reduction practices through yoga/meditation. A doctor will look at a person’s entire history in all aspects of life as well as the past and present diet of an individual. Then after the patient has provided current symptoms, many lab tests are completed in order to find out the *root* cause of the big problem. You mean there’s hope after all? Yes, why yes.

It took me FOREVER to get to the point where I finally stopped going the traditional route and made an appointment with a doctor who specializes in Functional and Integrative Medicine and is also a Registered Dietitian. I simply did not know these kind of doctors even existed! I would have made an appointment years ago had I known. It is definitely the way to go for anyone who is sick and tired….and well, tired of being sick!

Brittany

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