What Kind Of Doctor Should I See? The Kinds Of Doctors & Building Your Jedi Health Council
When you are feeling ill, chances are, you run straight to your medical doctor (MD). This is someone you may have seen since you were very young in age and simply got into the habit of going to for all that troubles you.
But, in some cases, the MD may not be the best fit for you. In fact, they could be far from it.
What you really need to be doing is assessing the condition/symptoms that you are dealing with and then determine which specialist is the right fit. When you see a specialist, you are seeing someone who is trained to help you achieve better health in that area.
For instance, if your toilet was broken, would you call a carpenter? While the electrician is a skilled trade and someone who is knowledgeable about fixing things, chances are, they aren’t that good at fixing the plumbing.
Instead, you need to call a plumber because that is who is trained to take care of this type of problem. You’ll have far greater success getting your toilet repaired if you go straight to a plumber compared to if you were to call the electrician first.
The same goes with your body.
When something isn’t working quite right, you need to stop and think for a moment about the answer to the question of what kind of doctor should I see.
Check out the video below for a primer on the various types of medical professionals to consider.
Let’s now take a closer at each type of doctor and what they have to offer you.
The first doctor you might consider going to is a naturopathic doctor. While this is a fairly new type of medical practice to the mainstream public, naturopathic remedies have been used since ancient times.
The big difference between a ND and an MD (naturopath versus medical) is that a naturopathic doctor is going to approach things from a whole. While the MD looks very much as your specific symptoms and aims to treat those symptoms, the ND is going to focus more on looking at all areas of your health and well-being.
They take a comprehensive view of the body and all the many different things that may be impacting you and then make their assessment of the situation from there.
Naturopathic doctors are more likely to utilize herbs as a means of treating illness as well, rather than resorting to conventional drug therapies. Whenever possible, they take the natural approach, using remedies that involve lifestyle modifications, changes in nutrition plans, and alterations in other behaviors such as stress management.
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Naturopathic doctors may also do additional testing over and beyond what the typical MD might do, looking further into hormonal profiles, running intensive urine tests, doing live blood analysis, and possibly looking into hair analysis as well.
Many people tend to move towards a naturopathic doctor who either exhaust the classical MD route and aren’t able to find help for what they are seeking relief from, or when they typically experience a number of unwanted side effects and symptoms from medication and want a more natural approach.
Naturopathic doctors can treat a wide range of illnesses and health conditions, so this doctor would be applicable to a great number of people.
The next physician you’ll want to have on your Jedi council is the chiropractor. When most people think of these doctors, they tend to think of someone who cracks your back whenever it’s sore.
And while they can do that, they can do so much more. The alignment of your spinal column can impact just about every body function and your overall well-being, so when it’s out of proper positioning, you may experience ongoing levels of fatigue, chronic headaches, aches and pains in your back and/or limbs, along with balance problems.
Also keep in mind that a chiropractor does more than just cracking your joints. Many will also use other techniques as well such as muscle stimulation, massage, as well as personal care instructions for you to use at home as you go about your day to day life.
Even if you are currently not experiencing any pains or symptoms, it’s still a good idea to visit a chiropractor on a regular basis. Going a few times a year to ensure that everything is in good alignment can help prevent future problems from occurring.
When you find a good one, you’ll know and chances are, you’ll constantly looking forward to your visits.
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Moving along, another great resources to have on your team of health professionals are Chinese acupuncturists or acupressure therapists.
With acupuncture, small needles are inserted into the body as a means of stimulating certain trigger points that can then work towards healing disease, combating pain, and helping you overcome a variety of health conditions.
Many use acupuncture to treat both chronic as well as acute injuries and it may also be used to help stimulate proper hormonal flow in the body as well. For instance, many women who are trying to conceive unsuccessfully will go on to get pregnant after going for acupuncture therapy.
Some of the main conditions that people may seek acupuncture for include:
- Tennis elbow
- Lower back pain
- Dental pain
- Minimizing cancer treatment symptoms
- Sports injuries
If you are dealing with an injury or condition, getting a proper assessment from a trained acupuncturist will help you better assess whether this form of treatment can assist you.
In addition to that, another ancient Chinese treatment that you may wish to look into is acupressure. This works off a similar concept as acupuncture does, only rather than using needles to stimulate the pressure points, the acupressure therapist will utilize pressure from their thumbs and fingers.
For those who are adverse to needles, this can provide an excellent means of treatment. Since they are both stimulating similar things, you can usually go for similar types of conditions or health concerns, however there are some conditions that may respond better to acupuncture simply because the needles are stimulating deeper into the body.
Thai Massage therapy is next on the list of modalities that you can use to enhance your health and well-being. When most people hear the term ‘massage’, they tend to immediately associate this with stress relief and relaxation.
And while that is part of what Thai massage has to offer, it does much more than that. With Thai massage, you’ll be combining the traditional massage therapy with acupressure, Indian Ayurvedic principles, as well as some assisted yoga postures.
Some people do describe this type of massage as being more painful because there is no use of oils or lotions unlike your typical relaxation massage, where oils are typically utilized.
In addition to that, with relaxation massages, you will get undressed during the massage, however with Thai massage, you’ll remain clothed. Instead of rubbing the muscle tissues, the Thai masseuse will compress, pull, stretch, and rock the body instead.
There are a number of benefits that come with Thai massage. Some of these include:
- Assisting with the detoxification of the body while improving immune function
- Increasing circulation, promoting the healing of body tissues thanks to enhanced oxygen and nutrient flow
to the tissues
- Decreased blood pressure, reducing the risk factor for heart disease and/or stroke
- Muscular relaxation benefits coupled with increased flexibility, mobility, and range of motion
- Decreased joint pain associated with movement
- Improved posture and body alignment
- Decreased pain associated with arthritis and/or back pain
- Relief from degenerative diseases and the symptoms associated with them
- Enhanced concentration and focus
- Superior mind-body connection, giving you greater balance and body awareness
- Increased mental clarity
- Lowered levels of stress and anxiety
- Enhanced energy levels
- Higher amounts of self-control
- Improved stamina
Thai massage can be used for a number of reasons and can be helpful to just about everyone. It’s an often overlooked form of massage therapy because most people commonly go straight towards the typical relaxation focused massages.
Another type of massage therapist that you may want to consider seeing is a rolfer, as they’re called, in which the therapist will work on the connective tissue in the body called the fascia.
The fascia is the tissue that links all the internal structures within the body and is constantly changing depending on the demands you are placing on the body.
Many people will see rolfers after suffering from an injury, and especially if they have not be able to find relief through traditional means of physical therapy or massage therapy.
Rolfing is also a great way to improve body alignment and posture, so it can go hand in hand with chiropractic treatment.
Deep Tissue Massage
One last type of massage therapy you might consider is deep tissue massage. This is one of the more painful types of therapies that you can utilize but one that will hit the muscle fiber deep within the muscle belly, reducing tension and knots that may be leading to pain and injury.
Deep tissue massage is far from ‘relaxation’ focused, despite the fact that from an outsider it may appear as though that is what it taking place.
Massage oils are more frequently used in this type of massage and you will be undressed lying on the bed while it is performed.
It’s a great option for those who are engaging in intense physical activity who may require a more thorough level of muscle stress relief than what conventional massage therapy provides.
Whichever massage therapist you choose to use, it’s one of the best hands-on medical treatments out there and can benefit both your body as well as your mind.
Another professional you’ll definitely want to get on your Jedi council for better health is a personal trainer.
Too many people, upon making the decision to work on their fitness choose to opt for following some workout program they’ve found in a magazine or the one their health club gave them when they first signed up for their membership.
The problem with these is that they are not customized to the individual in question, thus the chances of seeing optimal results from them are very low.
Instead, you want to consult with a personal trainer. This individual is trained to help identify areas of your body that you need to focus on and by inquiring about your goal set, figure out a workout program that will help you achieve the goals you have set out.
A personal trainer will also help you ensure that you are using proper form on the exercises you are performing, which can then help reduce your risk of injury and ensure optimal results.
All it takes is moving slightly out of proper alignment during your set to completely negate the effects the exercise is having on your body.
A personal trainer can help you accomplish performance related goals, bodyweight related goals, or health related goals such as decreasing blood pressure, improving your energy levels, or decreasing stress.
As exercise is such an integral part of leading a healthy lifestyle, it’s essential that you don’t take it lightly. Working out (whether it’s lifting weights or doing new cardiovascular training) is a new skill you need to learn and as such, need to learn it properly.
Even if you aren’t going to hire a trainer to be with you every single session that you do, having them there every so often for regular check-ups and guidance can make a tremendous difference in the results that you see.
When looking for a personal trainer, try and find one who specializes in what you specifically need.
For instance, if you are an older adult, you can find trainers that cater to this group of people. If you are an athlete, you’ll instead want to look for trainers who work strictly with athletes. If you are someone who is focusing primarily on weight loss, find a trainer who helps people achieve this goal.
The more specialized the trainer is to the goals you want to achieve, the greater the chances they will be able to guide you to success will be.
Along with a personal trainer, you’ll also want to take care of the other end of the spectrum. This means looking after your nutrition. Exercise and nutrition are critical for optimal health and well-being, and the nutritionist will look after your diet like the trainer will look after your workout.
Some people often mistakenly think that nutritionists are primarily for those who are looking to lose weight or who may be recovering from a disease and need to follow a certain type of diet, however this is not the case.
A nutritionist can be utilized by a wide variety of people including:
- Teenagers to help ensure they get the proper nutrition to grow and develop
- Adults who are looking to change their body composition
- Athletes who want to optimize there performance
- Those who are suffering from conditions such as diabetes
- Individuals who are suffering from low energy levels and think nutrition might be the cause
- Those who are looking for help preventing disease in the long run
- Those who have been instructed by their doctor to focus on reducing their blood pressure levels and/or
Almost everyone can benefit from seeing a nutritionist. Unless you are highly trained in the area of nutrition, a proper professional can help you ensure that you are giving your body what it needs through your everyday food intake.
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While it’s great to be looking after your body all the time, what about your mind? Are you neglecting it?
You might think that a psychologist is only for those who are suffering from some psychological disorder or who are going for counseling due to relationship problems, however this isn’t always the case.
Psychologists can be helpful for everyone and can allow you to gain insight on the behavior patterns you may have, learn how to change bad habits that you may have gotten yourself into, improve your social and interpersonal relationship skills, and combat against conditions such as depression.
There is sometimes a stigma associated with seeing a psychologist, but focus on getting past that. Just because you are seeing a psychologist doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you.
It just means that you are taking care of your mental health as well. You might see someone trained in this field for something as simple as learning how to better manage your stress and anxiety levels – something that everyone can benefit from.
Finally, the last professional you’ll want to get on your Jedi council of health is a muscle tester. This individual is going to assess your body’s muscular system, assessing where you are strong and where you may be weaker.
This is important information to help you pinpoint areas that you should then focus on working on with your exercise program. Identifying these weak muscle areas and then working to overcome them could help you side-step injury or performance related problems down the road.
So there you have a much closer look at all the team members you want on your Jedi council of health. Are you missing any of these critical people? While you may not need to see everyone depending on your current health status and needs, it’s important that you are aware of them and are including them if it makes sense to do so.
Remember, there is far more to the medical field than just your MD.
What doctors do you see on a regular basis? Comment below about your experience with any of the professionals noted above. Is there anyone else you would add?
Want more information on all you can do to achieve optimal health? Check out my 12 week program for free right now where you’ll learn about everything from nutrition to exercise to structuring your day for success.
Stefan, Dieterle, Neuer Andreas, and Greb Robert. “Acupuncture for infertility: Is it an effective therapy?.” Chinese journal of integrative medicine17.5 (2011): 386-395.
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