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Dr. Blesoff discusses the integrative approach to health care at national psoriasis conference

NUHS faculty Jamine Blesoff, ND, partnered with Veronica Richardson, CRNP, MSN, a nurse practitioner specializing in dermatology to discuss integrative medicine at a National Psoriasis Conference earlier this month. 

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The National Volunteer Conference organized by the National Psoriasis Foundation August 4-5 in Chicago attracted attendees from across the country, many of whom had the condition or were caretakers or family members of those with the condition. The conference featured round table discussions with researchers and workshops that covered a wide range of topics. 

More than just a skin disease, psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory condition that can be triggered by factors like stress, weather and diet. Those with psoriasis are also genetically prone to develop other conditions such as psoriatic arthritis, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer. Because of the triggers and other heath risks associated with psoriasis, it is especially important that patients are treated with both an individualized and whole body approach. 

Naturopathic physicians can provide several treatment options such as lifestyle counseling and stress reduction, vitamin and mineral supplementation, hydrotherapy, and soft tissue and boney structure manipulation.

"It was useful for those with psoriasis to learn more from naturopathic doctors who can help optimize their health to prevent other conditions from occurring," Dr. Blesoff said, adding that prevention is one of the philosophical tenants of a naturopathic medical approach.

Naturopathic physicians also work with patients to identify particular food sensitivities or triggers that contribute to chronic inflammation. To find a local and qualified naturopathic physician, Dr. Blesoff recommended using a search tool available on the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians website .

In addition to naturopathic physicians, there are several different types of health care providers that can assist with psoriasis, including other alternative and complementary practitioners specializing in acupuncture, oriental medicine, ayurvedic medicine and homeopathy. During the presentation, Dr. Blesoff discussed how patients can effectively create an integrative health care team to optimize whole body wellness and healing.

"Communication is key; each practitioner should know about your treatment plan and your health priorities," she said.  She also encouraged patients to request that their health care providers talk to each other when possible.

NUHS Whole Health Center in Lombard, Illinois, specializes in a similar integrative approach. The clinic offers a wide range of natural wellness services including chiropractic, naturopathic, acupuncture, oriental medicine and massage therapy. To schedule an appointment, call (630) 629-9664.

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