(Every healing journey at Trillium begins with a patient’s timeline. In February 2019 Trillium is taking the journey even farther by joining with ThrivingMind Retreats for a week long brain health retreat in Costa Rica. We will be reviewing participants timelines as part of the pre-retreat consultation. That way we can be prepared to meet your needs and help you find your path to optimal brain health when we are together in Costa Rica.)
I start most of my new patient visits with the same introduction. It goes something like this: “Today is really about getting to know you. We’ll start by going over your intake forms to make sure I understand everything about your current medications, symptoms, and demographic information, and then we’ll look deeply into your history. I like to start with a really thorough history because it helps me get to know you and to see your current symptoms in the big picture of who you are.” Most people respond to that introduction very positively—everybody likes the idea of being heard by their healthcare provider. But still most people are surprised when I start the history part of the visit with the question, “So, what do you know about your birth?”
In Functional Medicine, questions about one’s birth and early life are very important. We even ask patients about their mother’s health during pregnancy and preconception! Many people find it hard to see how their birth can be connected to symptoms they’re having many decades later, but Functional Medicine providers know that what happens to someone early on sets the stage for a lifetime of habits and thought patterns, a healthy or unhealthy microbiome, and alterations in gene expression. When these factors aren’t optimal they can lead to disease, but the good news is that these factors can be modified, and it’s in those modifications where healing happens.
Whether it’s cognitive decline, autoimmune disease, anxiety and depression or any other chronic illness, understanding and working on the root causes brings about healing. That’s the magic of the FM timeline, but it’s not really magic at all. It’s just common sense.