January 23rd is recognized as International Integrative Health Day. Many Americans are still unaware of the healing benefits of integrative medicine.
The healing benefits of integrative medicine
Integrative medicine treats the whole person -mind, body, spirit, and community. Integrative medicine physicians combine conventional “Western” medicine with other modalities of healing. This allows physicians to expand their medical toolkit by including various types of therapies. Integrative Medicine Physicians work with healers of many modalities within the community. Some examples of less conventional healing approaches include:
- Traditional Chinese Medicine
- Tai Chi
- Herbal medicine
- Energy Work
- Ayurvedic Medicine
Integrative medicine and community
Integrative medicine plays an important role in the community.
Many communities suffer pain and trauma. Systems of oppression in housing, education, and economic inequality contribute to health disparities. In these communities, individuals are under tremendous stress and might lack access to health resources. Integrative medicine therapies assist a body’s response to stress.
“The context of what is going on in your life impacts your entire body.” -Sreela Namboodiri, MD. Integrative Medicine Physician at Heartland Health Centers.
How is an integrative medicine visit different
Integrative medicine goes beyond a diagnosis and prescription. It is a slower approach to medicine. The goal is to not just treat the symptoms. We want to identify the underlying root causes of illness.
Over multiple visits, patients share information about themselves. This might include how they feel physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Patients discuss their environment and what is happening within their community.
Integrative Medicine Physicians create a timeline of these personal stories and events. This timeline helps identify the possible root cause of illness. Physicians, introduce alternative medicine therapies and partner with Behavior Health Physicians to develop a personalized patient treatment plan.
Heartland Health Centers and Integrative Medicine
Heartland Health Centers provides comprehensive, affordable, quality care to Chicago’s North and Northwest sides and near north suburbs. We recommend an Integrative Medicine Physician to patients seeking to learn more about holistic therapies. Patients with long-lasting or reoccurring symptoms such as chronic pain or chronic fatigue may also benefit from integrative medicine.
For more information about integrative medicine, watch our facebook live event.
If you are a patient or interested in becoming a patient, please contact Heartland Health Center or call our patient line at (773) 751-7800.