Because today’s naturopathic doctors (NDs) believe in understanding patients from the cellular level up, they actively pursue the latest biochemical findings relating to the workings of the body and the dynamics of botanical medicines, nutrition, homeopathy and other natural therapies.
Their diagnoses and therapeutics are science based and increasingly evidence based. While the training and approach of naturopathic physicians is progressive, naturopathic physicians practice in ways reminiscent of old-fashioned family doctors. They take the time and make the effort to learn about each patient and his/her family.
This means seeing fewer patients a day. Naturopathic physicians are likely to schedule no more than 10 appointments per day, a practice that benefits both patient and physician.
Because naturopathic medicine acknowledges and respects the interconnection of all living things, many naturopathic doctors bring a social consciousness to their work and personal lives. They are involved in wellness education, public health concerns and volunteer programs in their communities. Many advocate for the recognition of natural medicine as an affordable, effective medicine for underserved communities domestically and abroad. They often support environmental causes, such as the preservation of ancient forests as untapped resources for botanical medicines.
Doctors of naturopathic medicine learn to treat all aspects of family health and wellness, from pediatrics to geriatrics. As primary care providers, naturopathic physicians keep before them the mission to create a healthy world in which humanity may thrive. For a summary of the career of naturopathic doctor, including working conditions, academic requirements and other considerations, see the "Naturopathic Doctor Overview" provided by ExploreHealthCareers.org.