I am a big, big, big believer in Naturopathic Medicine.
In my story, I talk about how I believe my interest and involvement in this type of healthcare saved my life. I learned to pay a lot of attention to what's going on with my body. I believe that, had I not paid attention to my joint pain, and had I not already had the philosophy that it's better to prevent illness than to wait until it gets worse, I would not have caught the Lyme Disease when I did.
Naturopathic Medicine is a whole different way of medicine. It is not the average 6 minute appointment, it usually does not end with a prescription, and it is not 'assembly line' healthcare.
Have no doubt about it - Naturopathic Medicine is based in science. I'm not talking crystals or flower essences or reiki or energy healing (these things may have merit, I'm not saying they don't, but Naturopathic Medicine is not in the same class as these non-scientific and in my opinion, kinda 'foofy,' New Age, hippy dippy things).
Naturopathic Medicine is practiced by licensed primary care physicians who are trained in the medical sciences of histology, pathology, cardiology, obstetrics, pharmacology, anatomy, psychology, (and many more '-ologies'), so there is this entire foundation in real modern medicine. Then, there's this whole other side of the Naturopathic Medical training that studies the efficacy of herbs, nutrition, and other ways of dealing with health issues that Western Medicine frankly is not educated in and totally ignorant about.
Most appointments with a naturopathic doctor are nice and long (we're talking one to two hours) - you actually get the time that you need with your doctor to figure out what's going on - and better yet (since I'm all about getting education), your doctor will break down the information in real terms and actually teach you what's going on in your body. The goal is also to get the root of the problem, not just put a 'band-aid' on your symptoms.
I'm a fan of the documentary Sicko and generally don't believe we have a healthcare system in America, but instead we have a disease-care system. I think the present healthcare system is driven by profits, often at the cost of good patient care.
If you are looking for a different way to get healthcare, this is it. (Whether you have Lyme Disease or not). I mean, I cannot imagine a naturopathic doctor telling you that you aren't experiencing symptoms, or 'it's just part of getting older' or closing the book on you because they don't know what's wrong. They're like personal health investigators! They are also very good at referring - they are not here to think they know everything, like some Great And Powerful Oz like how many doctors like to view themselves.
I'm not really a believer in the allopathic/Western philosophy of: wait until you need drugs or surgery, then get drugs or surgery. (Thank God we have Western Medicine for when it's needed, I just don't think it should be the go-to every time.)
I will never forget this one phone call I got when I was working reception at a naturopathic medical clinic. This woman called to inquire about the clinic and said, 'Yea, my husband is having liver problems and the doctor thinks he should have surgery to get it removed. We want to see if there's anything else we can do in the way or herbs or something. We want to try something. Because we kinda think he needs his liver.' Hahaha! It was years ago, so I don't remember the outcome or anything. But in my years of working at the front desk, let me tell you, I have seen amazing things happen - infertility cured, deep depression cured, insomnia cured, chronic fatigue cured, fibromyalgia cured, so much pain and suffering cured after just a few months (or sometimes weeks or even days!). A lot of people say they wish they would have gotten naturopathic care years ago.
To see my entire naturopathic protocol to eradicate the Lyme, see my blog post here:
I also found an incredibly great article from an LLND on the basics of what a well-rounded naturopathic approach to Lyme looks like. Even for Lyme 'veterans' and 'pros,' you'll find something here that you didn't know before. Check it out: http://restormedicine.com/naturopathic-approaches-to-lyme-disease-treatment/
For more information and to find a naturopathic doctor near you, go to www.naturopathic.org.
**Big, important thing to mention: not everyone who uses the title 'Naturopathic Doctor' has medical training! All doctors at the website above are licensed (which means that they have been to years of real medical school and passed a board exam and the whole thing), but there are many, many more people who complete an online course and then use the title 'Naturopathic Doctor,' even without any medical training whatsoever - be careful of these posers. These are the 'quacks' that some people associate with naturopathy. The reason for this disparity is lack of legislation - in most of the states in the US, there is no regulation for Naturopathic Doctors, so anybody can say they are a doctor. It's crazy and of course hurts the real Naturopathic Medical community because you have a bunch of delusional 'doctors' quite possibly causing harm in the name of Naturopathic Medicine. (Did you know there are approximately 233 unlicensed, untrained people who are 'practicing naturopathic medicine' using that title 'Naturopathic Doctor' (ND) in the state of Wisconsin? And only about 20 licensed naturopathic physicians! Just crazy.) Each state has a small group of real ND's who are trying to get this regulation in place for their state. Wisconsin's is www.wisconsin-nd.org.