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What Is a Functional Medicine Doctor?

Doctor discussing diagnosis with patient

Have you heard of functional medicine? If you have, you may be intrigued. Functional medicine doctors generally spend time listening to their patients and taking a detailed history, they prescribe treatments as well as prescription medications, and they are good at treating chronic illnesses. If you want your treatment from a doctor’s office to be personalized with specific treatments chosen for you, a functional medicine doctor may be for you. But what is a functional medicine doctor? Does this type of doctor have a degree from a medical school?

In a word, yes. Functional medicine doctors train just like any other doctor, attending a medical school and earning a degree. This degree can be an MD, which is a Doctor of Medicine, or a DO, meaning Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. Functional medicine doctors can then choose to get additional certification from an organization that teaches functional medicine. That training doesn’t change their legal status, but a functional medicine certification means a doctor is trained to work within this type of medicine. Acupuncturists, nurses, dentists, chiropractors, and other medical professionals can also earn a functional medicine certificate.

How Does Functional Medicine Work?

So, what does it mean to practice functional medicine? Functional medicine doctors work holistically, looking at the whole patient in order to find the root of the patient’s problem, rather than treating symptoms. Taking into consideration factors like diet, genetics, hormonal shifts, medications, and lifestyle components, they personalize treatment plans to meet the needs of each unique patient. They look at a patient’s full history, taking more time than the typical doctor, and collect detailed information about not only medical symptoms, but also the patient’s overall lifestyle. The treatment plans a functional medicine doctor creates can include prescription medication, supplements, and different therapies. Once you are under the care of a functional medicine doctor, your progress will be tracked so that the doctor can tweak your plan and make adjustments to make it more effective.

Because of their multi-faceted approach, functional medicine doctors are good at solving complex health issues. People with conditions like depression, chronic pain, and inflammatory diseases can benefit from the unique processes these doctors use. They can help people without chronic illnesses, too, as functional medical doctors also focus on preventive medicine.

Schedule An Appointment with Advanced Functional Medicine

At Advanced Functional Medicine, an integrated medical clinic, we exclusively practice functional medicine. A full functional medicine approach to healing uses a comprehensive diagnostic screening to get to the root of a patient’s issues. Our whole body approach to medicine utilizes all-natural, researched-based nutritional approaches to optimize the body’s natural healing abilities, rather than just using medication to treat symptoms. Each individual receives unique and customized care, formulated based on the latest scientific resource, and we have a 96 percent success rate in patient outcomes. As a medically driven, patient-focused health clinic, we support our patients’ individual health goals, providing natural relief for symptoms of chronic factors and expert guidance about the decisions affecting a patient’s long-term health. It is our goal to help reverse chronic disease without resorting to dangerous or unnecessary drugs or surgical interventions, promoting healing from the inside out, in its truest, healthiest form. To schedule an appointment or learn more about how we can help restore your health and strengthen your body’s unique physiological functions, call 858-500-5572 or contact us through our website.