Functional medicine is a medical field that focuses on the body as a whole. Rather than looking at disease or illness in isolation, functional medicine considers external and internal factors that affect health, such as stress, diet, exercise, environment, and genetics. Functional medicine Sandy Spring practitioners may use diagnostic testing to understand better what might be happening inside your body.
Here are the benefits of functional medicine:
Functional medicine is a systems-oriented strategy for treating disease, involving both the client and the clinician in a therapeutic collaboration
It is a change in medical practice that better serves the healthcare demands of the twenty-first century. Functional medicine treats the whole individual, not simply a set of conditions, by moving the conventional disease-centered focus of clinical practice to a more client-centered approach.
Practitioners in functional medicine devote time to patients, attentively listening to their stories and examining the interactions between hereditary, ecological, and behavioral factors that might affect long-term wellness and complicated chronic illness. Functional medicine promotes the distinctive manifestation of healthiness in this way.
Functional medicine practitioners look at the patient as a whole
One of the key differences between conventional and functional medicine is that a functional medicine practitioner looks at the patient as a whole rather than focusing on screening for disease and diagnosing symptoms.
They take a whole-body approach to treatment that looks beyond individual symptoms to address the underlying causes of illness.
These practitioners view the body as an interconnected system in which every part functions together to create health and wellness or disease. They search for root causes of disease by asking why patients are experiencing symptoms and not just what those symptoms are.
Functional medicine considers all external and internal factors that affect health
Conventional medicine is reductionist, which means all it considers are the symptoms. It may seem like a small distinction, but it is quite significant. When you go to a doctor with a headache and are prescribed an analgesic or anti-inflammatory drug that does not address the problem, you are not fixing the problem. You are just treating the symptom. The root cause of your pain may be psychological or a result of poor posture.
Functional medicine principles embody this idea. Instead of thinking about diseases as external entities that need treatments externally applied, functional medicine starts thinking about diseases as problems within us internally caused by external factors like stress, diet, environment, exercise, and genetics. Treatment in functional medicine treats both inside and outside things.
Functional medicine practitioners use diagnostic testing to understand your body processes
If you are trying to figure out your needs, goals, and preferences in a functional medicine practitioner, it is important to understand how they work. Functional medicine doctors perform diagnostic testing to understand what is happening inside your system. The types of tests they use can vary by provider and individual case but often include blood tests, urine tests, saliva tests, stool tests, and hair tests. They may also perform antibody testing for food sensitivities and nutrient deficiency testing.
Finally, at its core, functional medicine is a field of medicine that seeks to understand and treat the root cause of chronic illnesses. To diagnose, the doctors check and analyze interactions between genetic, environmental, nutritional, biochemical, and lifestyle factors. Treatments are patient-specific and focus on getting the body back into balance using nutrition, lifestyle changes or exercise, and conventional medical treatments. You can schedule an appointment with Wellife Center to experience functional medicine.