Naturopathic Medicine

     Frequently Asked Questions


What is Naturopathic Medicine?

Naturopathic Medicine is a unique primary health care system that combines modern scientific knowledge with traditional and natural medicine. It is based on the healing power of nature and the ability of the body to heal itself when supported and stimulated.

What are Naturopathic Doctors? Naturopathic Doctors or NDs are primary health care physicians trained in natural medicine. They are trained in Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, Clinical Nutrition, homeopathy, Physical medicine, botanical medicine and lifestyle Counseling.

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How much education does a Naturopathic Doctor need?

In order to become a Nauropathic doctor, students must first obtain an undergraduate education from an accredited University with a focus on various science pre-requisites, including biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, and psychology. Prospective students must then apply and be accepted to one of four diploma-granting institutions in North America. The Naturopathic medical curriculum is an incredibly rigorous four-year full-time program, involving extensive study of traditional medical sciences such as anatomy, physiology, pathology, and pharmacology, in addition to natural healing methodologies like diet and nutrition, traditional chinese medicine and acupuncture, botanical/herbal medicine, and homeopathy.Licensed Naturopathic Doctors must write and pass two sets of North American Standardized Board Examinations before they may practice in NS as a registered member of NSAND.

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What is the difference between a Naturopathic Doctor and a Homeopath?

Training and The treatment. Naturopathic Doctors are general practitioners in natural medicine. They receive a minimum of 3 years pre-medical training at University, then 4 years at an accredited naturopathic medical college. They are primary health care practitioners using a variety of therapies in their treatment. Homeopath's only prescribe homeopathic medicine. An ND may use homeopathy, botanical medicine, physical medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture and Clinical Nutrition or a combination of any of these to treat the patient.

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Is a visit to a Naturopathic Doctor covered by MSI?

Naturopathic Medicine is not covered by MSI at present. But most extended health care plans cover naturopathic visits. Call your health plan provider (private plan through your employer) and find out your particular coverage for naturopathic medicine.

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What is the difference between a Naturopathic Doctor and a Naturopath?

A Naturopathic Doctor has graduated from a four-year graduate level accredited naturopathic college after completing a minimum of 3 years of pre-medical studies. A Naturopathic Doctor is educated in all of the basic sciences but also studies holistic and nontoxic approaches. A licensed ND belongs to a regulatory body that oversees standards of practice, complaints and discipline. Naturopathic doctors must have mal-practice insurance, practice ethically and professionally. The term naturopath refers to a non-medically trained natural health provider from correspondence/long distance programs, short-term naturopathy schools. It is common for naturopaths to practice in unregulated provinces such as Nova Scotia.

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How do NDs diagnose?

When you visit an ND they will take an extensive health history, do a physical examination, review your medications and evaluate laboratory tests and diagnostic imaging.

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Do I need a referral to see an ND?

No you don't need a referral.

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