A licensed Naturopathic Medical doctor (N.M.D) attends an accelerated four-year, graduate-level medical school where he/she is educated in all of the same basic sciences as an MD, learns pharmacology, and minor surgery, but also studies holistic and nontoxic approaches to therapy. There is a strong emphasis on disease prevention and optimizing wellness. In addition to a standard medical curriculum, the naturopathic physician also studies clinical nutrition, homeopathic medicine, botanical medicine, psychology, physical manipulation, acupuncture, and counseling. A naturopathic doctor takes rigorous professional board exams so that he or she may be licensed by a state or jurisdiction as a primary care general practice physician. Many Naturopathic Doctors are now opting for a 1-3 year residency as well. Please see the AANMC’s Professional Competency Profile for more information. You can also check out breeze.ca.gov, to verify a license in the state of California.
N.M.D.'s treat all medical conditions and can provide both individual and family health care. Among the most common ailments they treat are allergies, chronic pain, digestive issues, hormonal imbalances, obesity, respiratory conditions, heart disease, fertility problems, menopause, adrenal fatigue, cancer, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. In some states, NMDs can perform minor surgeries, such as removing cysts or stitching up superficial wounds. However, they do not practice major surgery. NMDs are trained to utilize prescription drugs, although the emphasis of naturopathic medicine is the use of natural healing agents.
Naturopathic doctors work in private practices, hospitals, clinics and community health centers. NMDs practice throughout the United States and Canada. Qualified naturopathic doctors undergo rigorous training before they become licensed health-care practitioners.