Integrative Medicine is a TEAM Approach.
And with it, everyone truly does achieve more. Especially our patients.
TEAM: Together, Everyone Achieves More. Integrative medicine is rooted in the idea that no one medicine has the market on truth. Instead, each medicine is an approach to truth. Opposing types of medical providers can be likened to persons standing at the edge of a cliff — one looking in one direction, the other looking in the opposite. Both persons are standing at the same point, yet both see entirely different views. Both views are equally valid and true. The interesting thing is that if it were possible for each to see all the way around the world, they would see each other’s point of view, and they would realize that were simply looking at it from the opposite direction.
Western medicine (or bio-medicine) has been called reductionistic. In a way, this is true. Modern medicine tends to compartmentalize the body, and treat disorders of the brain, for example, as something separate from disorders of gut. Eastern medicines are known to be holistic and often speak in terms of “balance” or “imbalance.” They may find the cause of a person’s ill-health in any of the many systems of the body. These days, with recent revelations about the microbiome and brain health, it is clear that there is truth to the ancient, natural understandings and approach to medicine. And yet, no one can deny that if in a severe car accident, they would want to be taken to the nearest ER, and treated by the best Western medical surgeons available.
Integrative medicine is not about one medicine being superior than another. Integrative medicine is not about one medicine “taking over” another medicine, “validating” another medicine, or “proving” another medicine. Integrative medicine is about accepting that our understanding of ourselves, of our world, and of medicine has evolved over time, and that we are returning to re-claim ancient truths about our reality that we disregarded in our excitement over our scientific discoveries. It is about respecting ancient cultures, and respecting differing medical understandings and approaches. Integrative medicine is about working together for the highest health of the patient.
As a patient, and as a whole person, it is important to understand your options when it comes to integrative medicine. In serious and chronic disease, there is likely dysfunction, imbalance, or a loss of health in many of the aspects of the body: physical, emotional, energetic, mental, and spiritual. The reason why is because of inter-connection. When one part of us suffers, eventually, the rest of us will too. When we only utilize one medicine, such as modern pharmaceutical medicine or even naturopathic medicine, we are leaving out all the other perspectives and approaches that might hold a key for our recovery. Why would we want to limit our chances of recovery in such a way?
In understanding medicine, it is important to know that many medicines overlap. Chiropractic medicine, for example, came from East Asia, and it uses many East Asian medical techniques. Functional medicine is something of an umbrella term, and it includes the way Naturopathic, Ayuervedic, and East Asian health providers approach health. All of those aforementioned medicines (with the exception of some chiropractors) use Herbal Medicine to at least some extent. Naturopathic medicine often involves Homeopathy, and Homeopathy could be considered Energy Medicine. Meanwhile, Reiki and most Energy Medicines either come from Qigong or share the philosophy of East Asian medicine. Nearly all medicines use Nutrition and Dietary Therapy.
The reason so many medicines overlap is because each is a true approach to the whole. None of them are invalid. Just as we each have one body and there are many aspects to it, each type of medicine is an important inter-connected aspect of integrative medicine. The key in using integrative medicine is knowing which medicines to use when. A wise approach to integrative medicine evaluates many factors before weaving medicines together and coming up with a treatment plan.
At Chiyu Center, we have a deep appreciation for truly integrative medicine. We don’t see other medical providers as competitors — we see them as collaborators. We are more than happy to work with your other providers to reach our ultimate goal: restoration of your health and happiness. When we use a TEAM approach to medicine, EVERYONE wins.