Children's Functional Medicine

As the 21st century dawned, parents began to realize that conventional medicine did not address all of the health needs of their children. Rather than conventional medicine's disease centered focus, parents began to realize that a patient centered focus was best for their children. Functional medicine addresses the underlying causes of chronic illness and disease, rather than just treating the symptoms.

Chronic Illnesses in Children

According to the National Institutes of Health , approximately 25% of children below the age of 18 suffer from chronic illnesses, including food allergies, epilepsy, diabetes, asthma and hypertension. Chronic health conditions in children can continue throughout adulthood if not properly addressed.

Some common conditions affecting children include –
  • Allergies, both food allergies and environmental allergies
  • Arthritis
  • Asthma
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Constipation and diarrhea
  • Diabetes
  • Ear Infections
  • Eczema
  • Gastroesophageal reflux/ heartburn
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Inflammatory health conditions
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Recurrent abdominal pain
  • Recurrent headaches
  • Recurrent infections like sinus infections, ear infections and colds
  • Yeast infections
  • Children suffering from these common illnesses may benefit from a consultation with a functional medicine practitioner. We try to identify the root cause of these illnesses and determine the best methods to resolve these illnesses and diseases through a whole-body approach.

    What to Expect During Your Child's First Appointment

    During the initial assessment, our functional medicine practitioner will spend time with you and your child and conduct a comprehensive evaluation. This may include –

    • In depth evaluation and detailed medical history and look for any lifestyle factors, environmental hazards and genetic components that can increase the risk of chronic diseases.
    • Discuss any stress the child may be experiencing, dietary choices, exercise habits sleep schedules and how they are performing in school.
    • Order some specialty lab tests to determine if there are any underlying food sensitivities, nutritional deficiencies, hormone imbalances and toxic buildup.

    Once this evaluation is completed, our functional medicine practitioner will address nutritional deficiencies and other issues that can result in health issues. The physician may recommend a combination of dietary changes and exercise recommendations to help treat and prevent illnesses. In addition to this, the child may be advised a variety of holistic treatments to help balance the body and promote healing and well-being of the mind and body.

    Functional medicine focuses on providing patient centered care using the best practices in medicine. This technique helps to maximize the health of the child by supporting their unique biochemistry through detoxification and nutrition to restore the function and balance of the body.

    Nutritional Assessment

    Nutritional assessments will be performed to help identify and relieve a number of chronic diseases. Your functional medicine practitioner creates an individualized diet plan along with a nutritional supplement program to improve your child's health and reduce the risk of disease and death.

    Allergy Assessment

    Environmental allergies, along with food allergies can lead to an immune dysfunction that can result in a number of chronic diseases. Food sensitivity testing along with allergy tests can help identify additives, foods and environmental toxins that can cause harmful immune reactions in the body. Many people do not realize that their allergies and sensitivities may be the root cause of making them feel sick, fatigued or tired.

    Ensuring that your child is healthy is the first step towards decreasing the risk of chronic diseases and protecting their health into adulthood. Holistic healing for children involves taking a look at the child's environment, genetics, diet and allergies. Integrative medicine includes both conventional medical therapies and testing along with holistic approaches to develop therapies to heal the body, soul and mind.

    A number of complementary therapies may be used in conjunction with conventional medications, including acupuncture, stress relief techniques, nutritional supplementation, dietary modifications, exercise recommendations, chiropractic care and chiropractic manipulation. These therapies seek to relieve chronic disease and improve the health and well-being of your child.

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