Functional Medicine is an approach that seeks to identify and treat the root cause of chronic health conditions.
Most Functional medicine practitioners receive their training through the Institute of Functional Medicine (IFM) in the United States.
What Conditions May Functional Medicine Help?
Conditions that Functional Medicine practitioners may help include:
- Seasonal Allergies
- Anxiety and Depression
- Autoimmune Diseases such as Hashimoto's disease and Rheumatoid arthritis
- Digestive issues such as Heartburn, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
- Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain
- Headaches and Migraines
How Do Functional Medicine Practitioners Work?
Practitioners work by identifying and resolving the root cause(s) of conditions. The root cause of illness originates from three areas: physical, physiological and emotional trauma or stress.
Physical causes of the disease include concussions and post-operative scar tissue.
Physiological causes include food sensitivities, gut infections and nutritional deficiencies.
Emotional causes include current stress and earlier life trauma.
What Can I Expect During Appointments?
During the initial visit, practitioners will take a full medical history and perform a physical exam if necessary. After the case history, they will interpret the findings, highlight possible causes of your condition and, where needed, will recommend laboratory testing. Treatment at this point will be limited to general dietary or lifestyle advice.
In the second visit, the practitioner will explain any lab testing followed by a comprehensive treatment plan.
How Many Appointments Will I Require?
The number of appointments depends on your condition. In general, visits range between 6-10, spread over 3-6 months.
Can I Claim For Functional Medicine Appointments?
Most government and private health insurance plans do not cover Functional Medicine visits or laboratory testing. Some spending account type policies may cover the cost of appointments.