How Parents Can Make Use of Natural Medicine


When I was growing up, no one emphasized natural medicine as a viable health care choice. Instead I was brought up, as I imagine you were, to rely entirely on traditional medicine without realizing I had other options. In the Western medicine model, the doctor is usually the center of the family healthcare system and family members orbit around the doctor like planets in a solar system. But what about other options like naturopathy, acupuncture and Chinese medicine?

In my opinion, it is time for a revolution in our healthcare system, which should provide insurance coverage for natural practitioner visits and treatments in addition to traditional medicine. Part of taking charge of your family’s health is understanding your natural healthcare coverage as well as your traditional insurance coverage.

If obtaining natural health care is important to you, be sure to find out what natural approaches are covered or partially covered by your current policy. If your insurance company does not offer it, you might consider changing providers or plans. You can ask your family physician to suggest a chiropractor, a masseuse or a nutritionist because many doctors believe in a holistic approach. There is no reason to choose one path over the other since both options may be helpful in unison. If you are ever unsure about the compatibility of recommended treatments, get a second opinion.

art-1216-med2Dr. Robyn Barlow, ND, from Chico Naturopathic Medicine says, “Naturopathic doctors (NDs) are recognized as primary care providers in the state of California.  Pediatric care provides a great opportunity to educate the whole family on preventative health measures, as well as any underlying factors that might be contributing to a disease process.  We love treating children and laying the foundation for optimal health at an early age. is a great website for those who are new to the concept of naturopathic medicine.”

Western medicine can be expensive and is influenced heavily by insurance and pharmaceutical corporations. Insurance is intended to prevent this from happening, which is why we rely on it so much. Taking into account employment benefits, out-of-pocket insurance costs and co-pays, many families cannot afford all of the medical care their families need.

Clearly there is a need for a more balanced healthcare system. Think of Western medicine as the yang and Eastern medicine as the yin in a complete circle of care that represents an integrative approach to health and wellness.

Personally, I am finding natural health care to be less expensive and more comforting. It also produces fewer side effects for me. For example, I have struggled with anemia since the onset of puberty. Only recently, at midlife, I found consistent relief by taking natural, herbal supplements recommended to me by a licensed naturopath.

Fortunately, I have discovered that my insurance allows up to a certain dollar amount of spending per year on natural medicine practitioners, which is more than ample to fit my needs and the needs of my family.

Our job as parents is to partner with our practitioners to ensure a proactive, balanced approach. By doing this, we can set a valuable example for our children so they can be more empowered in their future health care decisions. When it comes to your family’s health, it is important to remember that no two people are alike. While some folks may not respond well to a natural approach, others may have dramatically positive results. Natural healthcare should not be considered a replacement for conventional healthcare but can work well alongside the usual, traditional medicine approaches.  

art-1216-med3Cheryl Boerger, from Sole Revival Reflexology in Mount Shasta says, “Reflexology is a non-invasive way to address many of the things that cause us pain and discomfort. It is safe for children and adults alike. Reflexology is a protocol of manual techniques applied to specific reflex areas predominantly on the feet and hands. These techniques stimulate the complex neural pathways linking body systems, supporting the body’s efforts to function optimally. The effectiveness of reflexology is recognized worldwide by various national health institutions and the public at large as a distinct, complementary practice within the holistic health field.” 

Christina Katz
About Christina Katz

Author Christina Katz believes in the power of the arts to improve and enrich the lives of children and families, and appreciates the moments she’s witnessed transformative results first-hand.

Comment Policy: All viewpoints are welcome, but comments should remain relevant. Personal attacks, profanity, and aggressive behavior are not allowed. No spam, advertising, or promoting of products/services. Please, only use your real name and limit the amount of links submitted in your comment.

Leave a Reply