Conventional medicine asks “what”, Functional Medicine asks “why?” to get to the root cause.
Let’s start with the “standard of care” first.
Medical providers are taught in school to wait until your lab results are outside the “standard lab range” – which is based on a statistic – and then you can be diagnosed with a disease and they can find a pharmaceutical drug or drugs to match up with that disease and send you on your way. Until you get side effects from that drug, and another one gets prescribed. You feel like a number or a chart!
Functional Medicine sees that you are an actual PERSON with thoughts, feelings, and emotions. And it’s important to take those into account! We consider lab values – but they are viewed from an optimal point of view to help you feel your best and to prevent or even reverse disease. Why wait? We consider your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual states. If any of these are off balance, it can create disease.
Functional Medicine looks at the entire body process and what could be causing your symptoms, rather than covering them up with a drug or a “bandaid.” Although certain drugs may be warranted at times, they are not the answer. If you have a leaky faucet, would you rather continue mopping up the water or would you rather just fix the leak? Functional Medicine looks at your body as one entire operating system, rather than multiple different systems. It’s an amazing machine and you have the power to heal yourself. Functional Medicine can help you do that and you will feel supported rather than ignored and chasing your tail.
Functional Medicine integrates traditional Western or Conventional medicine practices with integrative means and focuses on prevention through diet, exercise, lab and other testing along with detoxification and stress-management, and drugs and/or supplements when needed. It also takes into consideration the genetic makeup of each individual and factors that affect your body’s ability to function optimally.
Some things that Functional Medicine practitioners do differently:
*If a lab value comes back “normal” but you still feel bad, we consider that and treat accordingly to get you to an optimal level where you are feeling GOOD. “Normal” does not always mean “optimal”!
*More extensive labs are often run in order to look at underlying deficiencies and imbalances and get to the root cause
*You will typically get about 30-90 min of one-on-one time and you will really be heard! Everything you have to say matters.
*Your plan will be 100% individualized and will not follow a “treat this with that” sort of protocol. What works for you may not work for someone else, and vice versa. It’s about YOU.