Integrative Psychiatry is an approach that addresses the whole person—body, mind, and spirit—and uses the best methods of mainstream and complementary/alternative care, whether they come from leading-edge psychiatry and medical science or ancient wisdom and healing practices.
“The purpose of our lives is to be happy.”
– Dalai Lama
I believe that being happy and whole is our birthright. In my experience, the quickest way to change ourselves is through psychotherapy.
“Our prime purpose in this life is to help others.
And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.”
– Dalai Lama
First, do no harm. This is part of the Hippocratic Oath, taken by medical students as they graduate from medical school. This is always in my mind as I am sitting with a patient. Above all else, do no harm.
“Natural forces within us
are the true healers of disease.”
I believe that everyone wants to be well and live without pain, and that if we give the body what it needs, we will get better. We can encourage these natural forces with kindness and compassion as well as good nutrition, relaxation techniques, meditation, breathing techniques, exercise and medicine when needed.
Managing stress is a very important part of healing and maintaining good health. It may not matter what you are feeling stressed about. If you feel stressed, you are stressed.
“It is more important to know
what sort of person has a disease
than to know what sort of disease a person has.”
Of course it is important to understand the symptoms and to make a diagnosis, but to never forget that this is a unique human being who is suffering. I look at the whole person – body, mind, and spirit.
I look for the biological underpinnings – underlying causes – as well as the emotional, mental and spiritual issues.
To accomplish this, I take a thorough history and recommend comprehensive, scientifically based laboratory testing. It is crucial to evaluate such factors as thyroid and adrenal function, cofactors for the synthesis of neurotransmitters, issues of inflammation and pathways of detoxification. It is like looking under the hood of a car.
I am then able to recommend a personalized program of natural products – vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, antioxidants, herbs, homeopathy, and flower essences. And when needed, I also prescribe one or more psychiatric medications.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning.
Curiosity has its own reason for existing.”
– Albert Einstein
I continue to keep up with new ideas in medicine and also the research that substantiates these ideas.
“Compassion is that which makes the heart
of the good move at the pain of others.
It crushes and destroys the pain of others;
thus, it is called compassion.
It is called compassion because it shelters
and embraces the distressed.”
– The Buddha
Compassion is defined as – “A deep awareness of the suffering of another, coupled with the wish to relieve it.” It is essential for the physician to have compassion for the patient, and equally essential for the patient to develop compassion for his or her own self.”