Imagine a scenario in which you are seeking the help of a practitioner for pain in your wrist. You could choose multiple types of practitioners:
Practitioner number one does a physical examination, has an assistant take x-rays, examines the x-rays, and may talk to you for a moment about what you do with your wrist. She ends the consultation by prescribing a pill daily, telling you to wear a brace, and recommends cutting down on wrist movement as much as possible.
Practitioner 1 notes that 90% of the wrist pain should be gone in X amount of days and that there could be a few side effects from the pills.
Practitioner number two has a long discussion with you about not only what you do with your wrist, but what is going on in the rest of your life, if anything changed around the time that your wrist started hurting, etc.
Practitioner 2 would likely give you a couple of ideas what may have caused your pain. Perhaps they would even even provide a couple of treatments that may not seem related at all. Practitioner 2 would encourage you to examine a couple spots in your life that could be causing your wrist pain, though you may not understand the relation at all. Practitioner 2 would also tell you to tune into your wrist and ask what it wants or what it is telling you.
Who is going to help you heal better?
Who would you visit for medical advice? Most people would certainly choose practitioner number one. They have a well-regarded title behind their name, so they should be able to figure out what is wrong and how to fix it. Particularly with a drug that is patented and approved.
Practitioner number two is likely labeled a quack, since they seem to focus on unrelated things, aren’t quickly decreasing your pain in whatever way possible, and are asking you to participate heavily in your own journey back to health.
Do you feel like you get the message to trust medical professionals above all else? This can even be true of alternative practitioners. You may believe that they have the education and skills that you need when you have a symptom. You may look for the “hero” to help the symptom you are experiencing stop.
What do I mean by the hero? Someone who will stop the symptom at all costs, certainly causing you to feel better quickly. Making sure the symptom is gone is the important factor to them. It’s possibly the only thing they really know how to do. They often get rid of the symptom by referencing the body of knowledge they have from standardized studies.
Do you see this as a good or a bad thing?
Here’s the deal, your body is amazing at two things: Adapting, and giving you signals that something is up. Yes, perhaps this “adaptation” isn’t something that you particularly like right now. In fact, it’s probably something that you would consider the original problem, For example, you could get a cold because your body is begging for rest, but the cold is serving the greater good in this case. It’s making your body get what it needs.
You get in trouble when you don’t trust your body. In more ways than one.
My biggest concern with not trusting your body is in the realm of birth control. Many women choose to voluntarily take drugs that remove one of their healthy bodily processes. These powerful drugs? Hormonal contraception. All in the name of “the benefits outweighing the risks”.
I have two issues with saying the benefits outweigh the risks for hormonal contraception. First, those are not the only effective methods of contraception. Second, I believe that it is blatant disregard for your body.
Why is it disregarding your body? Lets say you do have a symptom that you are using the pill or other hormonal contraceptives to mask. The symptom could be serving a larger purpose, such as with a cold making you rest, or it could be trying to bring your attention to that part of your body for some reason.
Women’s health is riddled with “incurable” issues such as PCOS because the only thing that is done medically is the masking of symptoms. The root of the issue needs to be addressed for anything to be cured.
Rather than covering up symptoms, you can help your body get back to health (and in the process make the symptoms stop, as well) in a natural way.
For another method of contraception? Well, you have to decide what is best for you, but the sympto-thermal method of fertility awareness fits in well here because you can use it for not only contraception, but to track what is happening with your hormones. This means you can see if you have a hormonal imbalance and whether the changes you are making are helping your hormones become balanced.
This is where the other element of body trust needs to be utilized: Knowing that you can understand what your body is telling you. Especially with something as simple as when you are fertile.
So, I’m asking you: Build confidence in yourself. You know infinitely more about your body than any doctor.