You Know More than your Doctor – How?

As a patient of a natural medicine provider, it can be incredibly refreshing and exciting to have a new perspective that takes you--the whole you--into account. It can feel wonderful to feel heard and have a treatment plan that feels supportive. But it can sometimes also feel a little confusing or disorienting.

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Suddenly, there are a lot more choices, especially if you are involved with conventional medicine--the world of hospitals, specialists and prescriptions medications. Natural medicine and conventional medicine can work well together, but they don’t always know how to communicate with each other, leaving you in the middle with very different messaging and instructions to sort out. It’s a blessing to have so much care, but how do you make sense of it all?

Well, here’s a reminder. You are the one in charge of your care. Don’t let doctors--even this doctor--disconnect you from your autonomy. You are the one in charge and that means that you can say “no thank you” to a recommendation,  or “no for now” to a treatment option.

Medical professionals go to school and receive training for years to learn about bodies and how they respond to treatments. We carefully study the most dangerous situations and how to avoid them and the most effective treatments for common ailments. As a patient, it might sometimes feel easier or safer to say “doctor knows best” and go along with whatever recommendations are made. It might sometimes even feel scary to say “no” to a doctor.

But no amount of training can give us more information than you have about you. You are the only one who can tell if a treatment is helping or not. This insight is incredibly powerful and valuable!

The key, though, is to listen to your body. What does it feel like to be in your body today? How about yesterday? Signs that a treatment may be helping could be subtle, like minute releasing of tension in the belly, or a new warmth in your fingers and toes. Paying attention to signals from your body can also reveal when treatments or recommendations aren’t helping. These signals might be things like feelings of stagnation, excessive heat or cold, or, of course, pain.

Believe it or not, your body has all the answers. The doctors are just here to help you find them faster.