Integrative Medicine - What to expect

However you arrive, we're ready to help

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As the longest-running pediatric clinical integrative medicine program in North America, the integrative medicine program is truly unique. We're dedicated to helping kids heal using every tool at our disposal. Here's how your family might meet us:

  • We'll come to you. If your child is being treated in the hospital and his or her physician thinks your child could benefit from integrative medicine services, we'll visit your child's bedside. We'll speak with your family about your child's condition, symptoms and goals and work together to identify the treatments that may work best. Whether kids need coping strategies such as belly breathing or self hypnosis, or if they need massage, reflexology, or acupressure, we're ready to deliver when and where it's needed.

You come to us. There are several different ways your family may end up with our Children's integrative medicine program.

  • Your child may be treated for a condition in a different Children's clinic and his or her physician may refer your family to us.
  • Your child's pediatrician or advanced practice provider — even if he or she is not affiliated with Children's — can refer you to us for care. For instance, if your child experiences headaches or tummy aches, your pediatrician might suggest integrative medicine. Even if conventional methods are working, we can still work with you to learn integrative medicine skills.
  • Finally, if you think your child could benefit from our services, you can contact our clinic and we will help you make an appointment.

Preparing for a clinic visit

If your child's care journey starts at the integrative medicine clinic, knowing what to expect helps make the first visit less stressful. Before the visit, talk about it with your child. Show your child a photo of the doctor or advanced practice nurse from our directory.

To help us complete initial paperwork and concentrate on your child's care, it's best to arrive about 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment. That way, we can go through the registration and insurance process (remember to bring your insurance card and co-pay) and concentrate on what's most important— talking with you and your child so we can understand your concerns and take great care of your child.

Step one: Let's talk

Usually, the first visit to the integrative medicine clinic takes about 90 minutes. Your child will receive a physical assessment with a doctor or advance practice nurse. We'll talk with your family about your concerns, your child's symptoms, your family's treatment goals and more. We'll then make suggestions based on which treatments we think will meet your child's needs and goals.

Our team may even give you and your child a brief demonstration or sample of the therapies he or she will be receiving, such as aromatherapy or biofeedback. Before you leave, we'll help you schedule appointments to receive the recommended services for your child.

Step two: Following up

Generally, the first follow-up appointment is 1-2 weeks after the initial evaluation. The number of follow-ups will depend on many things, including your child's needs and your family's preference.

Many times, integrative medicine is a family affair. We'll work with you and your child to help you learn different tools. It can take some time to pick up these new skills, so be patient with your child — and yourself. Once you develop an understanding of the techniques, you can help your child along the way. For instance, you can practice deep breathing together before bed each night to help your child doze off and sleep soundly. Or perhaps you take a few minutes each day to practice mental imagery together and encourage your child to use those skills in times of stress or anxiety.

We're here to answer your questions, help you hone your skills and provide the guidance you may need when weaving integrative medicine techniques into your child's life.


LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR INTEGRATIVE MEDICINE PROGRAM

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