The following are short descriptions of a few of the modalities Dr. Renfer utilizes in treating her patients. The many modalities allows Naturopathic Physicians to truly practice medicine as an art.....creatively combining therapies to suit each individual patient, honoring each patient's background, beliefs and goals.
Nutrition and Lifestyle Counseling
Many times the first step towards healing involves making changes in diet and lifestyle. The most basic way that we show ourselves love is by nourishing ourselves with healthful foods and fluids. Thus we will work together to find ways to enhance the quality of the foods each individual eats, as well as increasing the joy and mindfulness with which these foods are consumed. Dr. Renfer is passionate about using food as medicine, and sends each patient with detailed guidelines and recipe ideas to make transitioning to healthier diet as easy and fun as possible.
In some cases, special diets may be very helpful in the healing process, thus Dr. Renfer will utilize specific dietary guidelines with individuals suffering from Dysbiosis/Candida Imbalances, IBS/IBD, Cardiovascular Disease, Autoimmune Conditions, Diabetes and other Metabolic disorders, etc.
Lifestyle counseling involves looking at our daily habits and addressing what may be out of balance. This can include exercise, work-life balance, and addressing addictions, which can exist in many different forms. As we learn to be mindful of what we put in our bodies and how our day to day choices affect our health and well-being, we develop a self-awareness and self-responsibility that is hugely powerful in stimulating the healing process.
Fasting and Detoxification Protocols
Often times, the best thing one can do for their body, mind and soul is to allow for a reset. This can be achieved through various cleansing and fasting protocols. Dr. Renfer supervises 21 day water fasting retreats, as well as supervising shorter cleanses and detoxification protocols specifically designed for each individuals specific needs and goals. This can include Water Fasting, Juice Fasting, Raw Vegan Diets, Broths etc.
Mind Heart Body Medicine
The mind, heart and body are considered one--what affects the health of the mind in turn affects the health of the body and vice versa. Most if not all physical symptoms are a reflection of our inner state, that of the mind and emotions. Thus for true healing, once must address all levels: Body, Mind and Heart. With supportive holistic counseling techniques, guided meditations and emotional release work, Dr. Renfer assists individuals in the process of uncovering those stuck emotions, harmful thought patterns, and what is referred to as "false beliefs" about the self. Many times these false beliefs are deep-rooted insecurities and fears stemming from traumatic life experiences, often in childhood and adolescences. Furthermore, we live in a consumerist society that thrives on the idea we are not good enough, thus we need to "consume" to feel secure in our choices and lives. So much of the unwinding that must happen is releasing what we are told about who we are, who we are supposed to be and how we are supposed to behave. Once these old wounds and restrictive view of the self are discovered and acknowledged, they can be forgiven, and eventually loose the hold they have on us. True healing occurs with shifts in awareness and perspective, about ourselves, our stories and our lives. Thus we are seeking that renewed sense of well-being and positive outlook on self and life as a whole.
We evolved on this earth with everything we need to gracefully survive, and plants have evolved along with us, as teachers and as medicine. Many pharmaceuticals were developed as isolated constituents of plants that were found to be potent medicines. However, while pharmaceuticals can indeed be potent, because they are only one part of the whole plant, they can have serious adverse effects, especially when taken long term. With botanical medicine, we utilize the full potential of the plant as medicine, which makes them more balanced with much less chance of adverse effects. Botanical medicine can take the form of teas, tinctures, capsules and topical applications, allowing us to choose what is best for each individual patient. We can prescribe single herbs or combinations, again, to best suit the patients needs. Botanical medicines are wonderful for supporting healthy energy/stress balance, supporting mood and sleep, balancing hormones and much more.
Homeopathy is a system of medicine developed by Samuel Hahnemann that has an entirely different philosophy than the western conventional view of health and disease. Conventional (allopathic) medicine finds its cure in opposites: have a bacterial infection? give an anti-biotic. have pain and inflammation? give an anti-inflammatory. Homeopathy follows the philosophy of "like cures like", thus the appropriate medicine will be the substance that produces the similar symptoms when taken in high amounts by a healthy person. For example, if you peel an onion, your eyes can begin to burn, itch and/or turn red. The remedy made from onion, called Allium Cepa, is a great remedy for allergies with symptoms of burning, itchy and red eyes. When choosing a homeopathic remedy, and in naturopathic medicine as a whole, we will look at the symptoms as the bodies attempt to restore balance. Homeopathic remedies support the bodies process by mirroring the symptoms, allowing for the body to move through the dysfunction and heal. Furthermore, since each person experiences disease in a different way, homeopathy allows us to pick the remedy that fits that individuals picture, treating the person as a whole rather than the disease as a separate entity.
Hydrotherapy is a modality that was developed in Europe by those ascribing to the Nature-Cure philosophy of health, that being that the path to healing begins in respecting and following the laws of nature. Those being that as natural beings, the basis for health begins with proper nutrition, adequate rest, movement, sunlight, and water. Hydrotherapy was developed to stimulate the bodies natural ability to heal through enhancing circulation and detoxification. There are various techniques, using a combination of hot and cold applications, baths, steams etc. It can also be refered to as Thermotherapy, as the alternation of hot and cold produces systemic changes in circulation that positively effect the bodies healing ability. Hydrotherapy can be combined with lymphatic massage, acupressure and/or gentle electrical stimulation for enhanced and personalized effects. Thus hydrotherapy is a appropriate and effective in a wide variety of conditions.
Gemstone Meridian Therapy
Gemstone Therapy is an energy medicine technique that involves the placement of specific gemstones and minerals on the body to assist in healing. The basis behind this therapy is the acknowledgment that we are more than our physical bodies, that we also have an energetic field that extends beyond the borders of our physical form. This is measurable and is especially prominent surrounding the heart and the brain. Thus, just has we can have physical imbalance, we can have energetic imbalance at the root of our dis-Ease. The gemstones have a crystalline structure that helps to restore proper functioning on these energetic levels. For example, quartz crystals are used in lasers as they have the ability to absorb, amplify and emit energy. Different stones have different crystalline structures and mineral compositions, thus we choose what gemstone(s) to use depending on what we are treating and the desired effect. Dr. Renfer utilizes the high quality spherical stones, which are safer and more effective when utilized in healing work. To learn more about Gemstone energy medicine click here.
Mayan Abdominal Massage for Fertility and Reproductive Health
Mayan Uterine Healing is a treatment based in traditional Mayan medicine. For women, the womb is our spiritual center, where much of our creative wisdom flows. The Mayan Uterine Massage session is focused on nurturing the female, who often takes care of everyone else around her before attending to herself. Furthermore, we carry a lot in our wombs, both physical and emotional weight can affect the health of our pelvic area. Dr. Renfer completed a certification program entitled, Naturopathic Approach to Mayan Healing, which covered many aspects of the Mayan healing tradition. The therapy is centered around the positioning of the uterus and how misplacement can result in many of the common ailments that women may have; including menstrual pain and irregularity, PMS, infertility, Headache or migraines with menses, low back pain, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, etc. The uterus is held in place by a set of flexible ligaments, thus it is susceptible to misalignment. There are a variety of reasons why the uterus may become misaligned; including, childbirth, back injury, chronic constipation, high impact activities such as gymnastics and running, etc. The treatment is very soothing and relaxing, involving foot and leg massage, acupressure on related meridians, and abdominal massage and gentle repositioning and support of the uterus. This treatment is excellent for those women with a history of sexual trauma, as it works to unwind and release tension in the area that is often associated with traumatic past experiences, as well as for those who recently went through childbirth or are trying to conceive.