Dr. Settle uses integrative medicine (which includes functional medicine) for the resolution of mental health challenges including:
- Brain fog
- Bipolar disorder
- Anxiety and panic
- Hormone imbalances
Through the lens of integrative medicine, Dr. Settle views symptoms as dashboard lights signaling deeper issues in your body, mind and spirit. These signals carry priceless information about the health of your body and it’s relationship with the world around you. Integrative psychiatry goes beyond what is offered by conventional psychiatry by screening for and treating a wide range of root-causes instead of focusing on silencing the body’s messages.
Serotonin is a household word but mental health challenges come from many other root causes including:
1. Inflammation. Current research implicates both brain inflammation (neuroinflammation) and body inflammation in causing or contributing to every type of mental health symptom. Symptom resolution requires: identifying and treating the source(s) of inflammation, and supporting and rebuilding the immune system.
2. Hormone imbalances related to PMS, menopause and andropause are powerful contributors to mental health symptoms.
3. Nutritional deficiencies and food sensitivities (especially gluten). The importance of diet to brain function cannot be overstated. The brain cannot operate without essential nutrients. Universal toxin exposure is making food sensitivities more and more common. Food sensitivities suggest inflammation and gut infection.
4. Adrenal fatigue and stress intolerance. Chronic stress and inflammation deplete stress resilience and increase vulnerability to mental and physical health problems.
5. Environmental toxins (metals, pollutants and biotoxins) are pervasive and overlooked as precipitants of mental health symptoms, especially in people who are genetically unable to clear toxins. Similarly, biotoxins (from mold, Lyme and other infectious agents) can have devastating effects on body, mind and spirit.
6. Hidden low-grade infections. The role of infections in causing potentially disabling mental and physical symptoms hasn’t been acknowledged by conventional medicine yet but the evidence for this association is clear. The most common sites of infection are gut, sinus and dental.
7. Psychological trauma is widespread, much more so that we realize. The effects on body, mind and spirit are persistent, insidious and devastating. PTSD is associated with a 35% increased risk of all-cause mortality which returns to baseline with PTSD treatment.