Natural, traditional medicine unite in Highland, A



    Eastern medicine and Western medicine have come together in the cities of Highland and Alpine.

    Dr. Diane Farley-Jones is a family practicioner who also specializes in homeopathy and natural medicines. She and Dr. Richard Sharp, a family practicioner in Highland, have both moved their practices to Highland and Alpine.

    Jones said her unique training lets her help patients in a specialized way.

    “My training in traditional medicine and my degrees in homeopathic, natural medicines and holistic medicines have helped me to practice in the way I have always wanted to. I love being a family practitioner, because I can work with the whole family and teach them about the importance of health,” Jones said.

    However, most people in the United States choose to go to family practitioners.

    “Traditional western medical training has much more experience here in the U.S. and alternative medicines such as homeopathy and naturepathy are more prevelant in Europe,” Sharp said.

    Family practitioners effectively treat about 85 percent of all health problems, but alternative medicine can really compliment Western medicine, Sharp said.

    “What western medicine does well, it does very well and what alternative medicines do well, they do well. I think it is very reasonable to have them as a practice in medicine,” Sharp said.

    In some respects, alternative medicine can be more valuable and helpful than traditional forms of medicine.

    “In some areas, traditional medicines have not found all the answers and one of those is chronic pain,” Sharp said.

    The reason traditional medicine hasn’t found the answers to some health problems is because it doesn’t deal with the whole person, Jones said.

    “Good health is a combination of nutrition and lifestyle. Often traditional medicines tend to fractionate things into parts–treating the sore throat, ear infection or apendicitis,” she said.

    Still, Jones said sometimes prescription medicine is necessary.

    “As a practitioner of traditional medicine I do prescribe prescription medication for many health problems,” she said.

    But, Jones’ unique background helps her prescribe alternative medications often more nutritional for the person. The natural medicines she prescribes do not necessarily treat the symptom, but they stimulate the body to heal itself and strengthen the body for later on, she said.

    Both doctors agree that traditional and natural medicines are important.

    “I don’t think one practice is better than the other, it is more up to the patients to decide which way they want to be treated,” Sharp said.

    Jones’ practice is getting more attention.

    “Some people come into the clinic asking for some pills to help them get rid of their health problem. Others come in looking for additional ways to combat their health problems instead of through prescription drugs alone,” said Sharon Parsons, a receptionist at the Alpine Health Clinic.

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