In the ordinary Western mindset, a doctor takes care of the body and others tend to the psyche and spirit. But you can’t split a person into parts that way.
The doctor as spiritual guide
Somatic health care is an approach to healing that integrates functional medicine with somatic psychology. This is a whole person approach that recognizes that any and all symptoms are a reflection of a deeper process of how we have learned to adapt to our environment. Our experiences impact not only our brain both physically and emotionally, but also impact the function and therefore health of our digestion, respiration, circulation, nervous system, and skin. When stress becomes chronic it causes us to contract and we breath shallowly and tighten our muscles in order to cope with feelings that we are unable to express. This results in restrictions in blood flow causing a decrease in circulating nutrients and oxygen. Over time, this causes physiological tissue changes or pain and a cycle of dysfunction is unavoidable. We may become ill and have a diagnosed disease, experience fatigue or just not feel well; we may have depression and anxiety, and we may experience problems in our relationships or at work.
My treatment is functional. I do this both in talk therapy as well as by working directly on the muscles and areas in the body where there is holding and tension. I may also make dietary recommendations which can include supplements in order to address some of the longstanding physiological changes as well as address any chemistry that can support mental health.