Russell Skinner, MD
Upon entering 2019, we are blessed with new beginnings. An entire calendar year—a clean slate of days—stretches before us, but how we fill those days is entirely up to us. We can cling to faded concepts of last year, or we can embrace this fresh start by welcoming new perspectives. Yes, we can learn from the mistakes of the past, but now’s the time to explore the opportunities in our future. Honestly, the number one goal of our hearts is to better ourselves, right? To enhance every area of our life—spirit, mind, and body.
So just like in January we take in the whole account of the entire year—our hopes, our vision, etc.—we should be just as adamant to focus on our entire self being whole. Therefore, integrative healthcare is one of our best options.
What is integrative healthcare?
Integrative healthcare (also referred to as functional medicine) utilizes the best therapeutic options from conventional medicine while incorporating holistic practices. The use of integrative approaches to wellness has increased within healthcare setting across the nation. More and more Americans are stretching beyond the confines of conventional-only medicine. In 2016, a Centers for Disease Control report indicated about 45,000 Americans have engaged with holistic practitioners and natural products, and that number continues to surge.
What are the benefits of integrative healthcare?
One of the many advantages of this approach is that it’s patient-oriented. Meaning, the objective is not to just treat disease, but rather aimed toward the pursuit of personal, optimal wellness. It’s catered to the individual rather than the standard, cookie-cutter method provided by conventional medicine. Basically, it focuses on the root of the problem, instead of just treating the symptoms.
Another benefit of integrative healthcare is that it offers a wider variety of treatment, emphasizing non-invasive procedures. There is also a close partnership between the you and the physician as both work toward the same goal—your overall wellness.
Integrative healthcare is also the understanding that one’s health stems beyond the traditional frame of mind about diagnosis and treatment. It recognizes all the factors that contribute to one’s health, such as environmental, emotional, mental and spiritual. Plus, it takes on a preventative stance through healthy living. This technique proves more effective in the long term because it doesn’t focus on treating symptoms but treating the whole person, teaching healthy habits that improve quality of life.
While integrative healthcare offers great benefits, it’s important to take an active role in educating yourself concerning the full spectrum of conventional and holistic practices.
So as you welcome the prospects that come with a new year, be sure to celebrate a healthier you.