From a Dad, to a Dad

Dr. Andrew Dodge and newborn son

copyright K*Photography

Over the past few years that I have been a chiropractic neurologist I have noticed that husbands and fathers can be either a barrier to their wives and children receiving natural health care or their #1 supporter.  I wanted to write this blog to both introduce who I am, Dad to Dad, and to give you an explanation of what I view as my responsibilities as a natural health care practitioner.

Being a father is a great calling, privilege, joy, and responsibility.  The highs of being a parent are incredibly rewarding and the lows of being a parent are incredibly challenging. We all want what is best for our children, and we all will do anything we can to give it to them.

Dr. Andrew Dodge and son

copyright Ashlee Dawn Photography

When it comes to the health of our children, we are faced with so many decisions and even more options on how to handle each one.  It is our innate desire to protect and defend our families and always look out for their best interest.  As a healthcare practitioner who tries to help families achieve health through more natural options than the current medical system, I always keep these premises in mind.

Dr. Andrew Dodge and sonI feel it is my first and foremost responsibility to educate and inform my patients and/or their parents.  This refers to both physiological, biomechanical, and neurological processes in the body that may be abnormal and causing symptoms, as well as treatment or supportive supplementation options.  If patients are informed of the causative factors that result in their symptoms and are aware of the possible treatments options (both natural and medical), patients and families can make better decisions on which path to travel and be more confident in those decisions.

My second responsibility is to treat my patients with the respect, drive, and enthusiasm with which I treat my own family.  This means explaining what I plan to do, why I plan to do it, and explaining the risks associated with these plans so that everyone is on the same page and everyone is comfortable with what is going to happen. This also means having the education and knowledge that I believe is necessary to council patients in their health care options.

Neurologist

I am often met with skepticism because of the license that I have – Doctor of Chiropractic.  It is a shame that many chiropractors let their knowledge of physiology, biochemistry, and neurology fade as they get farther away from their schooling years.  In my own case, I view myself as a perpetual student in regards to the way that the human body functions. I have never been satisfied with just accepting the philosophical view on why chiropractic care works to improve many people’s conditions.  There are always physiological, biomechanical, and neurological reasons behind why chiropractic care improves the way a person’s body functions.  I have taken, in addition to my doctoral training, over 500 hours of advanced neurological training, over 200 hours of pediatric and prenatal training, and over 100 hours of functional nutrition and functional medicine training in order to have a better understanding of these reasons and be better able to serve my patients. These hours equate to time (sometimes a lot of time) away from my own family, but I want my patients to understand my commitment to their health. I know the gravity of making health care choices for your children, and I want to have the most knowledge I can so that I can council my patients to the best of my ability.

In our office there is never any pressure to sign up for lots of visits, buy all kinds of supplements, or force you into doing anything that you and your family are not comfortable with. I am here to give you information and my opinion, and you and your family can do with it what you wish.  If you and your family decide to receive care in our office, we would love to serve you; if you decide you would rather go elsewhere, that is certainly your decision, and there are no hard feelings.  We are always here for co-treatment and care for any future issues that may arise.  I am a father too, and I know you have to always do what you believe is best for you and your family.

Oh, and if you ever have any questions, you can always contact me—you may talk to my wife when you call, but if you have a question that needs answering by your doctor, I will absolutely call or email you back in a timely manner. It is one of the things that makes us unique and allows us to continue to function as a small family practice.

Dr. Andrew About Dr. Andrew

Dr. Andrew Dodge lives in Staunton, Virginia, with his wife Nicole and their children Luke and Josie. Dr. Andrew is a graduate of Parker College of Chiropractic at Parker University in Dallas, Texas.

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