Frequently asked questions about naturopathy
What is a naturopath?
In Australia, a naturopath is a degree trained health professional.
I have a Bachelor of Health Science (Naturopathy).
To find out more about how I practice naturopathy, please read more
How do I find the best naturopath for me?
It can take trial and error to find the naturopath that's right for you.
Make sure they are qualified and registered with an Australian Association.
Check that the website specifically mentions the symptoms that you are experiencing, because naturopaths have areas that they focus on more than others.
What is the advantage of working with a naturopath?
When you work with a naturopath you will start to understand the underlying cause of your symptoms by paying attention to your diet and lifestyle.
A naturopath will help you to work with your underlying issues to achieve sustainable improvements in your wellbeing.
Will I have to give up my coffee or alcohol?
I'm a big believer in healthy moderation. You won't find that I'm too strict with your diet.
You may be able to continue with a cup of coffee per day as long as you don't have anxiety, reflux or insomnia.
I do encourage everyone to restrict their alcohol intake while they are working with me to allow the body to heal more quickly.
My focus will be on putting healthy foods into your diet and not on too many restrictions.
Are herbal medicines safe?
As a qualified herbalist I am trained to know how to prescribe herbal medicine safely and effectively.
Please let me know if you are on medications, pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have ever experienced allergies to plants.
Can I get a rebate using my private health insurance?
Unfortunately all private health insurers ceased to give rebates for naturopathy on the 19th April 2019.
How long will it take for me to feel well again?
How long have you felt unwell?
If you're suffering from something acute, such as tonsillitis, then I expect you will feel better within a week.
However if you've been sick for years, you can roughly expect that it will take a month to feel well for every year that you've been sick.
Frequently asked questions about SIBO
What does SIBO stand for?
SIBO stands for small intestine bacterial overgrowth.
It's a condition where some of the healthy bacteria from your large bowel have relocated into the small intestine and cause bloating, damage and malnutrition.
How long does it take to treat SIBO?
There are a number of phases to the SIBO treatment. In uncomplicated SIBO we can clear it in about 6 to 8 weeks. Stubborn SIBO can take longer.
How can you tell if I have SIBO?
Some of the signs you have SIBO are bloating, reflux, burping, gas, constipation or diarrhoea. You can read more about it here>
If you have SIBO you will test positive to a breath test designed to detect SIBO.
How do you treat SIBO?
SIBO responds to specific antimicrobial herbal medicines in conjunction to an elimination diet.
The diet starves the bacteria of the foods they like to feed on.
At the same time you may be prescribed herbal medicine to keep your bowels moving, or to reduce bloating and discomfort
Will my SIBO relapse again?
When you have SIBO, often the easy thing is to eradicate it, and the more difficult thing is to treat the underlying cause so that it doesn't reoccur.
I find the people who are most likely to have a relapse of their SIBO have ongoing stress in their lives, ongoing constipation, or hyper-mobility.
Frequently asked questions about perimenopause
What is perimenopause?
Perimenopause is the 5 to 7 years before you reach menopause (the end of your menstrual cycles).
At this stage your hormones are starting to decline and may fluctuate wildly.
Women often experience more symptoms in perimenopause than they do after menopause.
I'm having hot flushes, does that mean that I'm post menopause?
Some women experience hot flushes in the later stages of perimenopause, before their period stops.
The easiest way to know if you're post menopause is if you haven't had a period for more than 12 months.
For women who have had a partial hysterectomy it can be hard to know exactly when you've reached menopause. Hot flushes are a sign that your estrogen levels are low.
Can I do a blood test to see if I'm experiencing perimenopause?
I don't usually recommend hormonal blood tests during perimenopause because in my experience the best indicator of perimenopause is based on symptoms.
Hormones fluctuate during perimenopause during the month and also daily.
I have worked with many women who have been told after a blood test that there is no problem with their estrogen levels when they are clearly experiencing symptoms of high or low estrogen.
I have a really low libido, is that a symptom of perimenopause?
There are many things that can affect your libido such as low energy, stress, busyness, poor diet, not prioritising relationships.
Hormones are only one piece of the puzzle and low libido should never be blamed on perimenopause without looking at other factors.
Are there natural treatments for perimenopause?
Yes there are! I have written a whole blog post about this:
Symptoms in perimenopause can respond well to diet changes, lifestyle changes, supplements and herbal medicines.
Is my anxiety a symptom of perimenopause?
Not everyone in perimenopause will experience anxiety, however many women in their 40s can experience anxiety for the first time due to low progesterone levels that are a natural part of perimenopause.
Perimenopause can also make existing anxiety much worse.
Frequently asked questions about vaginal health
Do you work with Candida glabrata?
About 90 to 95% of women will present with Candida albicans and 5% with C. glabrata.
It is important to distinguish between these 2 organisms because they can respond to slightly different treatments.
If I have thrush, does that mean I also have Candida in my gut?
Not at all. Some women have Candida in the digestive system and the vagina, however most do not. Digestive symptoms related to Candida include diarrhoea or constipation, flatulence, bloating or rectal itching.
It is most likely that the Candida is only in your vagina, however gut microbiome testing can confirm this.
Do you prescribe herbal medicine orally or vaginally for bacterial infections?
Herbal medicines work well when taken orally because they might be targeting your stress levels or blood glucose levels throughout your body.
Some herbs are applied vaginally where they have a local effect to reduce inflammation or infection.
Is douching good or bad?
I often recommend douching for my patients, however this is based on your symptoms and is strictly prescribed to support your vaginal microbiome.
I do not recommend doing a douche that was recommended by a friend, or from FB or instagram as you might be damaging your delicate vaginal microbiome.
Do you recommend the anti-candida diet?
Some aspects of the anti-candida diet can be useful, however I find that herbal medicines and probiotics are often more effective than strict diets when it comes to eradicating Candida.
Do I have to sterilise my menstrual cup or is rinsing OK?
I highly recommend sterilising your menstrual cup between uses to avoid bacterial infections.
Can I get rid of genital herpes?
Genital herpes is very common and once you've contracted it, you will always have to manage the condition to stop flares.
Stress and being rundown are 2 of the most common reasons for herpes to flare.