As you consider your healthcare options, you may come across the term “functional medicine” and wonder how it differs from standard medical care. Is there a specific reason to see a functional medicine doctor? What are some benefits? Henry Community Health can help you understand the purpose of functional medicine and why it may be time to look for functional medicine services near you. 

What Is Functional Medicine? 

According to The Institute for Functional Medicine, “Functional medicine is a systems biology–based approach that focuses on identifying and addressing the root cause of disease.” In other words, functional medicine is more intent on looking at multiple root causes of symptoms rather than focusing on a singular diagnosis and treatment. For example, you may be suffering from insomnia, but there may be more than one cause contributing to it that may not be solved by a singular treatment such as a sleep aid. A huge part of this approach to medicine is taking a thorough medical and personal history. Functional medicine takes into account mental, emotional, nutritional, and genetic factors and how they may be contributing to your health struggles. A common word in any discussion about functional medicine is “holistic.” A functional medicine approach is about creating a thorough and accurate picture of your overall health and how everything is working (or dysfunctioning) as an entire system. 

What Is a Functional Medicine Doctor?

A functional medicine doctor first becomes certified as another kind of medical professional before pursuing functional medicine. Functional medicine is an additional specialization that a medical professional may choose to add to their existing credentials. If someone identifies themselves as a functional medicine doctor, they are committing to using the functional medicine model for their patients. This will include asking more in-depth questions about your personal and medical history as well as offering both traditional and non-traditional recommendations for managing your health needs, such as prescription medications in tandem with a nutritional plan. 

Why Would I Choose Functional Medicine Services?

Functional medicine services may be right for you for several reasons. Here are some to consider:

  • You want a more personalized experience with your doctor
  • You’re concerned about how your genetics, nutrition, or mental state may be contributing to your health problems
  • You want to have treatment options that include non-traditional approaches like supplements, nutritional adjustments, or other therapies
  • You struggle with a chronic illness that hasn’t responded well to traditional medical approaches

Patients who most often benefit from functional medicine have had a history of chronic, persistent illness and have not had much success seeing results. The reason why functional medicine may work better in these cases is that a functional medicine doctor is trained to look at several aspects of your overall well-being rather than specializing in one area of the body or taking a more general approach. 

How Do I Get Started With a Functional Medicine Doctor? 

If you are looking for a functional medicine doctor near you, start with a trusted healthcare organization like Henry Community Health. We offer a large variety of services and specialties that includes functional medicine.

We are proud to be home to Dr. Amy Carter who is a certified practitioner in functional medicine and earned her credentials directly from The Institute for Functional Medicine. She practices at New Castle Family & Internal Medicine conveniently located in New Castle, Indiana. You can contact the office directly by calling: 765-599-340. Visit Dr. Carter’s provider profile to learn more about her credentials and to download a Functional Medicine Intake Form to get started. You’ll have the opportunity to explore this specialized approach and see if it’s the right fit for you. 

Read more about our functional medicine services or visit our easy-to-use search pages to Find a Location or Find a Provider near you.

You are also always welcome to call our main line for any additional questions or for more information about HCH: 765-521-0890